In 2007 George Washington's grist mill and distillery were rebuilt on the original site about 3 miles south west of the the Home at Mt Vernon. Each winter the staff has attempted to recreate the distilling process from Washington's times. This year they did a fruit brandy and a Rye Whiskey. For the Rye, the grain blend or mash bill was based on records from George Washington's time, 60% rye, 35% corn, 5% malted barley. The grain is ground, fermented in wooden mash tubs and distilled at least twice in wood fired copper pot stills. The process is time and labor intensive. The whiskey is not aged before sale, As Washington would not have aged his Whiskey before sale.
This year's release is limited to 1,000 375 ML bottles. It is all sold onsite, under a special license from the state of Virginia (we have a state store system with special exemptions for on site sales at distilleries.) My sweet bear stood in line for me on Friday when the run was released (I was 2,000 miles away in Arizona.) They expected to be sold out by Today.
It is better then I expected. It has a complex flavor that reflects the rye and malted barley, there are undertones of prune, and a surprising smokiness that must come from the malted barley and the wood fired copper stills (it is not aged, normally smoke comes from the char in the barrel.) At 86 proof, it is smoother than I expected. Sort of historic reproduction moonshine.