News

Governor of Virginia touts international expansions

The Governor of Virginia put out a press release announcing our successful new relationship in Germany this year:

"Virginia distilleries provide a growing market for our Commonwealth’s agricultural products, and we are proud to support companies like Catoctin Creek and Reservoir as they pursue export opportunities and forge important relationships around the world,” said Governor Northam. “Foreign trade and investment are key to strengthening and diversifying our economy, and these two international partnerships are a perfect example Virginia’s commitment to helping businesses of all sizes explore new sales channels and compete both at home and abroad.”

You can read the entire press release, here.

Catoctin Creek in Best of Nova

Northern Virginia

Northern Virginia magazine included us in their Best of Nova feature again this year!  What an honor!  Stefanie Gans writes:

Catoctin Creek created the modern era of distilleries in George Washington’s playground. The husband-and-wife team—she’s the master distiller—set up shop in downtown Purcellville with a tasting room to showcase their award-winning spirits, like the flagship Roundstone Rye.

You can read the full story, here.

The Austin Whiskey Vault reviews Maple Cask Rye

Enjoy this fun video from the guys at the Austin Whiskey Vault!  They hit the nail on the head in several of their points about our rye:

  • 100% rye
  • Blue Ridge Mountains
  • 100% potstilled
  • Not cloying or sweet - just great flavor coming from the maple
  • 100% fun!

Whiskey Wash reviews Rabble Rouser

Rabble Rouser

The Whiskey Wash reviews Rabble Rouser.  I think they love it, giving it a 4.5 out of 5 stars.  Cindy Capparelli writes:

4.5 of 5 stars. Catoctin Creek’s Roundstone Rye has received multiple accolades. Think of the Rabble Rouser as its wilder cousin. “For the Roundstone, we want high level of reflux, so all the plates on the column are engaged. With the Rabble Rouser, the plates are disengaged, which captures a much rougher spirit, but with more of those fruity and nutty flavors. Then it spends longer in the barrel.”

You can read the entire story, here.

The 10 Best Bottled-in-Bond-Whiskies: Hiconsumption

Rabble Rouser

Hiconsumption gives us a little history about bottled-in-bond whiskey and what makes it special.  Then, he highlights the 10 best, and our Rabble Rouser is first on the list!  Sean Tirman writes:

With a name that harkens back to Old West barroom brawls and bootlegging, Catoctin Creek’s Rabble Rouser Bottled-in-Bond Rye is a much smoother and gentler drink than its name might suggest. As perfect in classic cocktails as it is on its own, this whiskey has a deep caramel color, both spice and sweetness on the tongue, and a finish that tapers off smoothly without lingering for too long. If you can find it, it should cost around $99 a bottle.

You can read the entire story, here.

Bit by a Fox podcast

Bit by a Fox

If you ever want to hear the deep origin story of Catoctin Creek, this podcast is the best we've heard yet.  Prairie Rose was enormously gracious in listening to my mid-life crisis story:

As I said in the podcast, "I wanted to do something made by hand. ...  Well, I'd love to make whisky!"

You can listen to the full podcast here, or download the MP3 here.

Catoctin Creek review on Bourbon & Banter

Bourbon & Banter

Lee Stang, writing for Bourbon & Banter, does revisits the distillery after an eight year hiatus.  Though he was not originally a fan, he seems to be now:

As I said at the beginning, I had tasted the Roundstone Rye about 8 years ago and was not a fan. This time around however was totally different. More rich and complex for an 80 proof rye. Remembering our talk about the 4 rye strain mash bill I asked if that is what they were using 7 or 8 years ago and Scott replied no, they had used a rye grain from Kansas and that was all they used. Over the years it appears that the taste profile has changed.

You can read the full story, here.

More painful tariff coverage in Barron's

Jake Emen covers the topic:

Harris says that his company has directly spent $100,000 on export promotion trips to the EU in the years since. The result was that in 2018, Catoctin Creek expected a full quarter of its revenue to come from the European market. Right before the tariffs hit, he says another trip overseas netted a dozen handshake deals he was eager to finalize.

“Upon our return, when the tariffs went into effect, our distributor dropped us, and our sales in the U.K. never materialized,” Harris says. “That 25% revenue we expected from Europe was about 1%.”

Read the full story, here.

Washington Post : Whiskey Sour

Some coverage of how trade wars hurt small businesses like ours, front page coverage from the Washington Post:

But weeks after the Harrises’ triumphant European tour, the White House unleashed a trade war with the European Union by slapping tariffs on steel and aluminum imports. The E.U. retaliated with tariffs that made some American goods, including bourbon and rye whiskey, more expensive to import.

Catoctin Creek’s orders from Europe dried up, and a potential British distributor lost interest. He “ghosted us like a bad girlfriend,” Scott Harris said from the distillery’s red-brick tasting room as a pair of shiny stills chugged away behind a plate-glass window. “He just stopped answering the phone.”

Read the full story, here.

Hai Visto Tom Collins!

Enjoy this fun little video from Italy!  I don't think you need to speak Italian to enjoy this. 

Much thanks to Zafferano for the sponsorship of the product.

Hai Visto Tom Collins!

Bourbon Brotherhood and the Distillery Trail

Scott Harris and the Bourbon Brotherhood

On my recent visit to Louisville, Kentucky, I was invited to speak at the December meeting of the Bourbon Brotherhood.  Lucky for me, Distillery Trail was there covering the meeting.  They did a nice profile of our company, our products, and the history of rye whiskey in Virginia.

Husband and wife team Scott and Becky Harris started Catoctin Creek Distilling in 2009. In the late 2000s, Scott had what one might call a mid-life crisis as he approached 40. “You know if I was going to construct for myself, the perfect version of hell, it would be sitting in a windowless office under fluorescent light making PowerPoint charts for people that will never read them,” said Scott. “I started to day dream about making something. I kept going back to when I was a 15 year old kid and I worked in a winery. It was cool, in a winery, you press the grapes, you bottle it, you ferment it and you do all this stuff and at the end of the day, or at the end of a fermentation period you have something in your hand, you can present it to somebody, you pour it, you can taste it and you can say, ‘I made that.'”

You can read the full story and see the video, here.

Latest News

Barron's: 20 Minutes with Becky Harris

Barron's did a 20 minute Q&A with Becky Harris, our chief distiller and president, but also the president of the American Craft Spirits Association.  Jake Emen interviewed Becky for this piece: When you started the distillery, did you get a lot...

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Wine & Country: Five Charming Places to Visit in Loudoun

Wine and Country recently did a story on five charming places to visit in Loudoun, and Purcellville featured on the list.  Douglas Rogers writes: If you prefer something stronger than tea, Catoctin Creek Distilling Company, the first Loudoun distillery since Prohibition...

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Esquire - The 10 Best Rye Whiskey Brands

What a lovely thing to be included in Esquire's "10 Best Rye Whiskey Brands" article: Another craft distillery with a strong focus on rye is Virginia’s Catoctin Creek; it even trademarked the term "the Virginia Rye Whiskey." Founders Scott and Becky...

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Contact Us

Catoctin Creek Distillery

Catoctin Creek Distillery
120 W Main St
Purcellville, VA 20132

Tel (540) 751-8404


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Latest Events

Fred Minnick's Repeal Day Expo

DEC 5 Repeal Day Expo - Hosted by Fred Minnick! Dec. 5th, 12:00pm EST until... On December 5, we celebrate the Repeal of Prohibition. And because it's 2020, we will party like it's 1933...

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Catoctin Creek Bingo!

NOW thru 2020 Catoctin Creek BINGO! For the rest of 2020... Catoctin Creek is happy to announce, Catoctin Creek BINGO!  Whether you live in the District or in Virginia, we have a game...

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The Art of the Cocktail - The Online Class with Scott Harris

  JAN - FEB 8-12   Art of the Cocktail Class – 2nd time, we're still ONLINE! 7:00pm—9:00pm Catoctin Creek is pleased to present, our SEVENTH year of this six-part educational series on the art...

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