On a incredibly hot and humid day this summer, I got to go down to Kings County Distillery in the Brooklyn Navy Yard and interview founder Colin Spoelman for Red Wing Heritage. When I got there, the old brick building, with no A.C., was hot and stuffy with the sweet smell of aging whiskey and warm grain.
It was like being transported to Kentucky.
My favorite part of the interview was when Spoelman described home distilling as a sort of act of civil disobedience. On the law that says consumers can’t make spirits at home, and his book about home distilling, he says, “It’s a silly law. It’s a law that doesn’t really apply to the way the government operates. It was a law that was designed for an income structure before the income tax was passed. But the idea was to share this with people and to say it’s not dangerous, you’re not going to hurt yourself. You’re actually going to learn a lot. It’s really fun and you should do this.”
I couldn’t agree more.
My second favorite part of the visit came when we got to tasting some of the product. Two things really surprised me: Chocolate Whiskey and Grapefruit Jalapeno Moonshine. Neither of these I'd probably ever order at a bar, but both I really, really enjoyed. The moonshine is likely out of stock now, but my advice is if you can get your hands on it, do. Also, warm your belly with some of that Chocolate Whiskey as well, even if you never thought you'd drink a chocolate spirit.