American whiskey making has long been dominated by corn and rye. And who, really, can argue? Bourbon, by its very definition, can only ever be an American thing. Our era of Colonial resistance and Revolution were fueled by Rye Whiskey. While these things are clearly deeply rooted in our cultural identity, they are also themselves predicated on the global history of whiskey - in specific the Barley whiskies of the British Isles.
This month's spirits feature is a relatively new and exciting category of American Whiskey, pioneered by distilleries like Golden, Clear Creek, Stranahan's, and Westward Whiskey. It is a category of spirit as yet completely defined, and as such has carved a meandering, yet confident path into the awareness of American whiskey drinkers. As its producers strive to establish not only their individual, but also communal identities in a crowded whiskey industry, their bottles have continued to find their way, albeit slowly, on to the shelves of bars both public and in homes across the country.
Stay tuned on Saturdays this month as we taste through several of the producers named above and others as we take a more focused look at what we hope will be a continually increased presence of American Single Malt Whiskey.