Forty years ago, boutique wineries sprang up. About 20 years ago craft breweries came on the scene. The latest addition is micro or craft distilleries. In 1890 there were 5000 distilleries in the U.S. After Prohibition, just eight (that were legal!) The first on the scene was St. George Spirits founded in Alameda, CA in 1982. Today there are at least 350 and the trend is up. What sets a craft distiller apart from the small lots created by major distillers? A lot has to do with quantity produced but more than that is the integrity of the product, the use of local or organic ingredients, and distillation methods that are unique.
One such distillery is Sun Liquor Distillery. Joel Butler, MW and experienced spirits judge interviewed Head Distiller Eric Chapman recently. You’ll find his interview here.