Welcome to Summer - Our June Newsletter
Stepping into Summer with Catoctin Creek.
We are heading full on into summer, and couldn't be happier with the warmer weather. Whisky sours, gin and tonics, gimlets, and brandy slushes. Yes, please!
Just to highlight a couple of the cool events we have coming in June:
- June 1 (Friday) - Cask Proof Hickory Finish is released in the tasting room! This is a once a year type offering.
- June 15 (Friday) - Dinner at the distillery. Come join us for an elegant four course dinner with a chance to dine with Scott & Becky in our luxurious setting. Many excellent cocktails will be enjoyed.
- June 16 (Saturday) - Father's Day at Catoctin - Bring dad in for tastings and enjoy some of our cask proof hickory syrup and meet the makers from Falling Bark Farm, who make that syrup.
We've got lots of cool news and updates to tell you about, so read on for more information!
Becky Harris in Food and Wine Magazine
Food and Wine recently wrote about "6 Women in Whiskey to Watch," including a profile of our own president and chief distiller, Becky Harris. Becky's fresh approach to whisky is the underlying reason why we introduced Roundstone Rye nine years ago, to bring a new type of whisky to a lot of people who didn't consider themselves whisky drinkers. Quoting Becky in the article, Ceil Miller Bouchet writes:
Harris encourages new whiskey drinkers – especially women, she says – to trust their taste and not the experts. “Your body chemistry and your individual experience is just as valid as everyone else’s,” she says. “When you like something, that is the one for you. Who cares what the others think?”
This thought follows from our way of thinking at Catoctin Creek: If everybody is making and consuming the same thing... well, where's the fun in that?
You can read the full article, including profiles of the other women in the story, here.
Scott Harris on Fox 5 News making whisky sours
On Wednesday night, Scott Harris, founder and general manager of Catoctin Creek, appeared on Fox 5 evening news to talk taxes, economic development, and whisky sours. Key points raised during the quick interview:
- The reduction in Federal Excise Tax has allowed small businesses like ours to invest in jobs--good high paying jobs--that improve our local community.
- We also invest in other businesses like farms and other suppliers, further boosting the local economy.
- The tax savings allow us to invest in our own business with about $1M more of equipment coming online in the next year, allowing us to get more of our product to more people.
- And finally, May is whisky sours month at Catoctin Creek, and a hibiscus, strawberry, lime whisky sour is a beautiful thing!
Watch the full clip, here.
Catoctin Creek Cask Proof named EDITOR'S CHOICE in American Whiskey magazine
Huzzah! Catoctin Creek Roundstone Rye Cask Proof was named the Editor's Choice, 9.0/8.9 points and the highest rated whiskey in the premier issue of American Whiskey magazine! A highlight from the review by Rob Allanson:
Palate: Big sweetness, vanilla and toffee, caramel coated apples. Snickers bars in liquid form, peanut, caramel and milk chocolate. The savory edge of dusty books.
Comments: Just what you want from a rye - spice punch, tannins and a dusty sweetness.
Get your copy of the magazine, here.
TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence for 2018
We were elated to once again be given the Certificate of Excellence for 2018 from TripAdvisor! This is our fourth year running as the #1 events venue in Purcellville, and we couldn't be more thrilled.
“Winning the TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence is a true source of pride for the entire team at Catoctin Creek, and we’d like to thank all of our guests who took the time to complete a review on TripAdvisor,” said Denise Petty, Tasting Room Manager at Catoctin Creek. “There is no greater seal of approval than being recognized by one’s own customers. With the TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence based on customer reviews, the accolade is a remarkable vote of confidence to our business and our continued commitment to excellence.”
Read the full press release on our website, here.
Bourbon Paddy reviews Roundstone Rye 92 Proof Distillers Edition
So very cool to have a great review from Bourbon Paddy, who reviews whiskey from his home near Dublin, Ireland. As we are just starting our entrance into the UK market (not Ireland just yet, unfortunately), it's great to see Paddy's detailed review. From the review, he writes:
This is a very nice easy drinking rye whisky; it’s smooth, flavourful, well-balanced, and not just an over-oaked fiery wall of young rye spice and barrel char. What stands out for me is despite coming across young and grain forward on the nose, those bold and spicy rye grain notes are very well balanced by the rest of the flavours as you sip giving a spicy rye with a fruity edge. At times it is hard to believe that this is a 100% rye mashbill because of all the beautiful flavour notes that emerge as you chew this; however, I put this down to the fact that this isn’t sourced (so no familiar MGP notes here) and Catoctin’s considerate approach when making this whisky.
You can read the full review, which includes detailed notes on nose, palate, finish, as well as production notes, here.
Photo courtesy Bourbon Paddy.
Cool events this month!
There are some amazing events planned for spring! Check out the full list here. Be sure to join us for all the fun!
Cask Proof Hickory Finish Whisky Release
Beginning Friday, June 1st, when we open at 1pm, we will release the Catoctin Creek Roundstone Rye Cask Proof Hickory Finish whisky! Just in time for Father's Day!!
The Roundstone Rye Cask Proof is our DOUBLE GOLD winning expression of Roundstone Rye, released at its natural cask proof, near 120 proof (60% ABV). Finished in the hickory syrup barrel, this one is slightly more tangy, a wee touch smoky, and very, very rich. This is a rare bottling. The last time we released this was a few years ago, and we probably won't have more of this for a few years to come. So come on in and get it while you can! Limited hand-numbered bottles -- when they're gone, they're gone!
Dinner at the Distillery
June 15, 7:00pm. Dinner will be a four-course affair, using seasonal produce and local suppliers, prepared by Chefs Wes Rosati and Maria Aros of The Wandering Chef. Enjoy a private tour of the distillery from owners, Scott and Becky Harris. Scott & Becky Harris will also personally craft cocktails expertly paired with your dinner! This will be a magical evening, and one not to miss!! Dinner is priced at $99, and includes all four courses and cocktails.
June 16, 10am. Catoctin Creek Distilling Company will conduct a BOTTLING DAY on Saturday, June 16, at 10:00am. Volunteers wanted. Learn how to bottle, cap, seal, and label Roundstone Rye. Get your chance to work the magic "whisky cow"! Or maybe you'd like to try your hands at operating "Ninette", our fancy French labeling machine! This event is FREE to attend!
Father's Day at Catoctin Creek
June 17, 1pm - 6pm. We have some amazing things in store for Father's Day! Our Roundstone Rye Cask Proof Hickory Finish whisky will be on sale in the tasting room! Travis and Joyce Miller of Falling Bark Farm will be present sampling tastes of their award-winning hickory syrups, so you'll have a chance to meet the makers and taste the syrup that went into the making of our Hickory Finish Cask Proof. Come by and get your bottles of syrup and whisky!
We'll also have a putting green competition with some cool prizes for winning putts!
Sunday, Father's Day: Catoctin Creek is the place to be! Bring dad and have some fun!!
Paint & Cocktails
June 15, 6:00pm - 8:00pm. An exclusive Catoctin Creek Distillery event! Join Amy Walton, renowned local artist, as she leads a course on painting at the distillery. The price includes hors d'oeuvres, all painting materials, and one cocktail.
About our artist: Amy Walton has 40+ years of experience painting all over the east coast. Now calling Virginia home, she pulls inspiration from the beautiful landscapes of Loudoun County. She specializes in oil, watercolor, and pastel paintings.
Shake, Bake and Boil with Magnolia's
July 14, 1:00pm - 4:00pm. Summertime means seafood, so we're doing our second seafood boil with Magnolia's at the Mill! Great local vendors like War Shore Oyster Company and Winchester Brew Works are teaming up with Chef Erik at Magnolia's and Catoctin Creek to do a good ol' fashioned crab and seafood boil! Guests will arrive at Catoctin Creek Distillery for a tour and welcome cocktail at 1:00pm. Then we will stroll down 21st Street to Magnolia's patio space by 2:00pm for the seafood boil and festivities. Space is extremely limited, so reserve your ticket now!
Cocktail of the Month – Strawberry Hibiscus Sours
Ahhhh.... summer is unofficially here. And with it, strawberries! This take on a traditional whisky sour is refreshing and just about as pretty as a rose blooming on a summer evening.
1.5 oz Catoctin Creek Roundstone Rye
1 oz fresh squeezed lemon
1 oz strawberry-hibiscus simple syrup*
Lemon wheel garnish
Combine all three ingredients in a shaker of ice, shake, then strain into coupes. Garnish with a lemon wheel.
*Strawberry-hibiscus simple syrup
In a mixing pot or a crock pot, combine 1 cup of sugar with 1 cup of water, along with a 15 oz package of sliced and mashed strawberries and 4 oz of dried hibiscus blossoms. (If hibiscus blossoms are unavailable, you can use pre-packaged hibiscus tea, like "Red Zinger".) Steep the syrup mixture until fully dissolved, then for another 30-60 minutes. Strain out the solids and bottle. Will keep for 1-2 months in the fridge.
See this cocktail and hundreds more on our cocktails page.
So Long For Now
As always, we thank you for your support as we continue to craft the finest spirits in Virginia. Please visit our Instagram, Facebook and Twitter pages, where you can stay up to date with the daily activities at the distillery. We are open every Tuesday through Sunday for tastings and bottle purchases, so stop by and see us sometime!
Scott & Becky