In Good SpiritsKelly Seiz | June 3, 2015 | Comment
There’s no better way to end the day than with the finest wine, purest spirits, and most delectable brews. Here in the Hudson Valley, we take pride in the quality and selection of professionally brewed, distilled, and aged craft beverages, all with an artisan’s touch. It all starts with our world-class soil, which allows the production of our exceptional fruits and grains. Those crops provide the excellence that we embody with all of our artisanal craft beverages. Head over to Millbrook Vineyards and Winery in Dutchess County, hailed by the New York Times as “The Hudson Valley’s flagship winery,” for a tour and tasting of their Chardonnay, Tocai Friulano, Pinot Noir, and Cabernet Franc. Check out Whitecliff Vineyard in Gardiner, winner of the prestigious New York State Wine and Grape Foundation’s Grower of the Year Award, well known for their Gamay Noir.
In recent years, a new generation of innovators has supplied both a boon to the agricultural industry and an appealing new spin for visitors and residents alike: small batch, craft distilleries are transforming apples, corn, and other lush valley region crops into top quality liquors. Whether they’re seeking new pleasures to delight the refined palate or simply a unique weekend expedition, enthusiasts are finding the pursuit of the perfect spirit at local distilleries a rewarding experience. Orange County Distillery in Goshen produces extraordinary rye and beets for their renowned whiskey and vodka. Dutch’s Spirits in Pine Plains, known for its Sugar Wash Moonshine, is planning to open its farm-to-table restaurant, The Bunkhouse, this summer, to augment its tasting room experience. Hillrock Distillery in Ancram, offers the world’s first solera-aged bourbon, with a nose of dried fruit, vanilla, caramel, oak, and spice, with a hint of floral accent.
In Kingston, Keegan Ales is famous for their ever-popular Mother’s Milk, a dark stout with luscious hints of oatmeal and chocolate. The Gilded Otter in New Paltz offers a two-level restaurant seating area set around their massive brew tanks, so you can watch the brews your enjoying being made right in front of you. The Newburgh Brewing Company has transformed an abandoned factory in the city’s historic district into one of the region’s coolest drinking halls, serving upscale bar snacks and their ever-changing menu of “sessionable” (generally low in alcohol) beers.
From the well-honed classics to the singular and creative, the Hudson Valley is home to dozens of brewers and distillers that provide the best in boozy beverages.