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  1. #1
    Advanced Taster
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    NE Lower Michigan
    Posts
    223

    Grand Traverse Distillery

    The only way someone could think of the Grand Traverse Distillery as a let down is if they judge a book by it's industrial park cover.



    The folks there use the still to cook up a lot more than just the vodka that got the distillery on the map.



    All of their whiskeys are made from White Dog that is distilled separately. They market at the distillery the requisite 1, 2, 3, 5, and 10 liter barrels and they can sell you White Dog varieties in

    Wheat,



    Rye,



    Corn,



    Malted Barley and



    Peated Malted Barley:



    All in White Dog form for you to mix up your own batches of Whiskey.

    Imagine, if you will, a Peated Barley Bourbon.

    Aged Whiskey

    Here at the distillery we are excited about whiskey! Whiskey has such a range of flavors and character that the possibilities are endless. Our first idea is to bring back a traditional early American whiskey, rye. Americans enjoyed rye whiskey before prohibition. Rye whiskey offers a unique flavor that is one of a kind. Early Americans did not ask for a shot of corn whiskey, they asked for a shot of rye. Corn liquor did not take off until after the repeal of prohibition. America has thousands of small distillers but the large fee placed on distilleries by the federal government after prohibition eliminated most of them. What was left were the “big boys” and corn cost less than rye.. Distilling corn for whiskey offers a much more neutral spirit vs. rye. We have gone back to the roots of American whiskey and will offer a 100% rye whiskey. We take great care in distilling our rye whiskey, and placed it into new American oak charred barrels. Here the whiskey reacts with the charred barrel and the result is a unique whiskey experience. We are looking forward to introducing these unique whiskey sometime in 2010.
    We also have put up a bourbon style whiskey and are using rye as the flavor component. Corn, rye and malted barley are the grains. Corn must be the main grain to be classified bourbon. Our bourbon style whiskey is now aging in barrels. We are looking forward to introducing these unique whiskey sometime in 2011.
    A 2nd straight rye whiskey is being barreled at this time. We are using blend of 60% rye and 40% corn. It will offer a different flavor profile than our first 100% rye whiskey. We are looking forward to introducing these unique whiskey sometime in 2011.
    As soon as we empty our whiskey barrels we will be distilling a 100% malted barley whiskey and offer something for those who enjoy a single malt whiskey (scotch). A straight wheat whiskey will also be in the works within the year. We will keep you informed on our whiskey adventures with our newsletter so please sign up.


    Anywho, it was great fun to visit Michigan's largest distillery and check it all out. While I was there I asked about getting some of their new rye in a barrel proof and they said that when the next batch of barrels are gotten into they might just be releasing some.

    www.grandtraversedistillery.com

  2. #2
    Guru
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Livonia, MI
    Posts
    2,065

    Re: Grand Traverse Distillery

    Interesting, I'll give the whiskey a go when I see it. Thank for posting this.

  3. #3
    Connoisseur
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    North Alabama
    Posts
    577

    Re: Grand Traverse Distillery

    Quote Originally Posted by Special Reserve View Post
    Interesting, I'll give the whiskey a go when I see it. Thank for posting this.
    Now that just sounds like fun. I would enjoy working with the different spirits to try my hand at aging it to my own tastes.
    Often I am forced to deal with the fact that I prefer bourbon over dealing with facts.

  4. #4
    Advanced Taster
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    NE Lower Michigan
    Posts
    223

    Re: Grand Traverse Distillery

    Their bourbon will be out in 2011. I am anxious to try it. I think they have made a fantastic 100% Straight Rye right out of the box, their vodka is voted one of the best in the country and everything I tried during the sampling was very good.

  5. #5
    Advanced Taster
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Lansing, MI
    Posts
    159

    Re: Grand Traverse Distillery

    It's funny that is one of the first threads I see here after joining since I just discovered this "local" distillery last Friday. I was bored and was looking for Michigan distilleries. I didn't see any prices on their website so I fired off an email to see what they were all about, here is the response I got.

    Hi Doug

    The cost for the un-aged whiskey in 1 liter bottles at 125 proof is $26.50 per liter, we offer corn, rye, wheat , malted barley and a peated malted barley. The whiskey barrel which is American white oak and charred comes in 2L at $59.00, 3L at $69, 5L at $89 and the 10L is $134. We can custom blend whatever you would like at 125 proof. Just let us know what mash bill you want.

    We are going to sell bottles to put it in very soon. You can also reuse the barrel two more times for aging your whiskey. Please call us with any more specific questions or stop in and see us.

    Thanks for your interest and support!

    Kent Rabish
    Grand Traverse Distillery
    781 Industrial Circle, Suite 5
    Traverse City, MI 49686
    231-947-8635
    www.grandtraversedistillery.com
    To me this sound very interesting, the next time I am up there I am going to have to stop in.

  6. #6
    Virtuoso
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Louisville
    Posts
    1,091

    Re: Grand Traverse Distillery

    That's an interesting way to make money while waiting for whiskey to age, unlike the usual bottling juice from somewhere else. It's also good to have something for tourists to buy up there besides cherry pie and preserves.

    If they really want to get some fudgie money they should make sweet cherry brandy or sweet fortified cherry wine.

    I based that on the winery I visited in Wisconsin's cherry country that sold cloying fruit wine to the tourists by the case.

    Edit:

    OK, I see that they do make a cherry vodka, which should be enough of a hit with the tourists to keep them in business.
    Last edited by craigthom; 05-03-2010 at 15:16.

  7. #7
    Guru
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Metro Detroit
    Posts
    5,168

    Re: Grand Traverse Distillery

    Don't hate on cherry wine. There is some damn good cherry wine out there that is as complex and hefty as any port. Fruit wine should not be a dirty word, and I've had plenty that give most grape wines a run for their money.
    bibamus, moriendum est
    Sipology Blog

  8. #8
    Virtuoso
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Louisville
    Posts
    1,091

    Re: Grand Traverse Distillery

    I wasn't talking about fruit wine in general; I was talking about the sickly sweet crap they sell in Door County, Wisconsin, which is across the lake from and similar to the Traverse City area, in that they are both full of tourists and famous for cherries.

    Tourists like the sweet wines. I've seen cases flying out the door. I have no problem with the fact that they make what sells; I'm just not going to buy any.

  9. #9
    Apprentice
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    USA, MI
    Posts
    48

    Re: Grand Traverse Distillery

    Great post. Am I understanding correctly that until 2011, you are not going to be able to buy this on the local shelf?

    I'm not much for making it myself, I just don't have the right space for that.

    However, I would love to try a MI rye. I'm hopeful for a good MI rye by 2011, just due to geography, as long as it is not terrible, and the price is right, I'll always keep it stocked.

  10. #10
    Advanced Taster
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Lansing, MI
    Posts
    159

    Re: Grand Traverse Distillery

    Quote Originally Posted by thanis View Post
    However, I would love to try a MI rye.
    I got their email newsletter this morning and it stated that their Old George 100% Straight Rye Whiskey is available for purchase at the distillery. I states that they have only bottled the first 3 barrels. I sent an email to see how long it was aged, to which they replied, "Ole George is aged in 53 gallon charred oak barrels and is a little over 2 years in these barrels."

    One thing I like about these guys is when you email them the owner/operator/master distiller Kent replies in person. In this age of massive companies with out sourced customer service I think that is pretty neat. I can't wait to get up there and pick up a bottle of this stuff.

    Anyways here is the link to the newsletter if you are interested
    Too much of anything is bad, but too much of good whiskey is barely enough. - Mark Twain.

 

 

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