Artisan Spirit: Fall 2013

Page 20

Tuthilltown Spirits WRITTEN BY LANETTE FAULKINBERRY

t

|||

PHOTOS BY MICHAEL BLOOM PHOTOGRAPHY

he backstory on Tuthilltown is one familiar to many craft interesting and different. The very wide opportunities in the craft distillers. Ralph Erenzo and Brian Lee, the founding partners side of the industry. The challenges of developing in a nascent

talk about those early day challenges, “We knew absolutely industry.” He goes on to say that what excites them most about nothing about spirits except how to open a bottle when we the industry is the freedom that comes with not having any started.” Ralph remembers how they overcame these challenges hard ties to old traditions, meeting their customers in person by studying online, calling experts and visiting other small and experimenting with raw materials. Speaking of their raw distilleries in Europe.

materials, it’s worthwhile to note that Tuthilltown works with

Ralph calls it serendipity, the only explanation of how they local farmers who grow grains and apples just a few miles down started down the path to becoming craft distillers. If neighbors the road, keeping with true small batch craft distilling ideals. had not objected to the original plan of turning Tuthilltown

It’s not only the local farmers that are benefiting from their

Gristmill into a “climber’s ranch,” then there might never have business, but also the larger community. Ralph says that their been Tuthilltown Spirits. Talk about one door closing and another visitors spend money in the town at local markets, restaurants one opening.

and gift shops. There are also 20 new jobs that didn’t exist before

With their most recent accomplishments at the San Francisco the distillery. Tuthilltown recently received one of the greatest World Spirits Competition with a double gold medal for their tourist attraction stamps of approval, the Trip Advisor Certificate “Hudson Four Grain bourbon” and another gold medal for their of Excellence, so visitors are set to keep coming. famous “Baby Bourbon,” it’s clear that they’re not slowing down

Direct contact is very important to Tuthilltown’s brand

any time soon. What keeps them so motivated to keep moving awareness. Ralph mentions, “Our primary strategy goes like this: forward? Ralph explains, “The excitement of doing something the owners and producers go out and sell the product. We go out

20 WWW.ARTISANSPIRITMAG.COM