Father’s Day. Bachelor parties. Visitation by extended family members with whom you share very little in common. Tuesdays….
Sometimes, you just need a good reason to drink a whole lot of craft alcohol. Luckily, the Hudson Valley is home to a tremendous number of small distillers who have been refining their trades for decades. The next time you need an 80-proof bonding experience, set your worries aside and book one of these “spirited” local distillery tours.
This little distillery has a big connection to the Hudson Valley. With locally sourced grains and whiskeys named for local highways, Still the One is all about their locale. They also produce vodka, gin, and the occasional odd experiment here and there. “287” is a limited run favorite, distilled straight from locally brewed beer. (The original batch came from Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.’s “Freshchester” pale ale but there’s a new batch in the works if your local supplier has run dry.) Tours are available by appointment, and the tasting room is open 4-8 p.m. Thursdays through Fridays and 1-5 p.m. Saturdays.
1 Martin Pl., Port Chester, 914.305.4437
This namesake distillery actually has two locations. Tasting tours are available Tuesday–Sunday, 12-5 p.m. at their production facility in Goshen (reservations not necessary for smaller groups, but still suggested) and cost $5 per person for three different spirits. While there are no tours, tastings are also available at their cocktail bar at Brown Bear Farms in New Hampton. Open Thursdays and Fridays 5-10 p.m., Saturdays 12-10 p.m., and Sundays 12-7 p.m., tastings here run three spirits for $5, six for $9, or $15 for everything they make (currently an even dozen varieties).
19B Maloney Ln., Goshen, 845.651.2929
286 Maple Ave., New Hampton, 845.374.2011
We named their Dutchess Private Reserve Straight Bourbon Whiskey a Best of Hudson Valley winner in 2014, but there’s also classic cask strength rye whiskeys, straight and double barrel bourbons, and even Rolling Hills Rum, so a little something for everyone. The tasting room is open 12-6 p.m. Saturdays and 12-5 p.m. Sundays, for $15 per person. You can even tour the facility on Google Street View!
179 Bowen Rd., Stanfordville, 845.393.4583
Authentic, locally grown and distilled small-batch spirits? Say no more. Actually, we will say more: Tours run hourly from noon to 5 p.m. on weekends for $12, with the option to include a tasting flight of five spirits for just $3 more. Don’t have time for a full tour? Forget the reservation, just walk into the visitor’s center any day of the week and ask for a tasting flight for only $10.
14 Gristmill Lane, Gardiner, 845.255.1527
Speaking of Best of Hudson Valley winners … DPD has made the list three years running. Local ingredients are transformed into whiskeys, vodka, and even apple brandy all on site. Tastings are open-house Fridays 2-8 p.m. and Sundays 2-6 p.m., while tour-and-tasting combos run two to three per day on Saturday afternoons for $5.
10 N. Chestnut St., Beacon, 845.476.8413
We couldn’t skip out on including Hudson Valley Distillers in a list of Hudson Valley distillers. It’s literally in their name. It’s their entire name, in fact. Well how would you like to walk the distillery start-to-finish with one of the owners, and then get to try three of their multiple-award-winning spirits? The farm and facilities are family- and pet-friendly, and the market includes local beers, wines, and ciders for after you get home. Tours are available for $15 at 4 p.m. Fridays, 2 and 4 p.m. Saturdays, and 2 p.m. Sundays, and generally last about 45 minutes.
1727 Route 9, Claremont, 518.537.6820
We might have already mentioned how much we love this little self-contained farm and distilling operation located in Ancram. From the creativity shown in their solera aging process to the authenticity with which they craft their Scotch-style single malt whiskey, it’s an impressive facility to tour (and taste). Tours run 12-4 p.m. on weekends by appointment, which for $20 include a keepsake tasting glass. (Fee is waived for anyone purchasing a bottle.)
408 Pooles Hill Rd., Ancram, 518.329.1023