MODERN-DAY SNAKE OIL
Your ‘Craft’ Rye Whiskey Is Probably From a Factory Distillery in Indiana
The artisan whiskey industry has a big secret—many of the ‘small-batch’ distillers are actually buying their product from a large factory in Indiana.
Read the promotional materials for the Rancho de Los Luceros Destilaría and you form an image of a supremely artisanal effort. The distillery creates “small batch heirloom spirits handcrafted in New Mexico.” Each batch of their rye whiskies, vodka, and gin is “individual and unique,” and “each bottle is hand bottled and hand marked with batch and bottle number.”
These are the standard selling points of the craft-distilling movement, with its locavore lingo, terroir talk, and handmade hype. But, in the new crowd of micro-distillers, it is now standard for the alcohol being sold to come not from their own distinctive stills, but from a hulking factory in Indiana.
I'm a fan of artisan whiskey and this sort of startled me.