Good Food Awards winner 2014
Not many spirits get into these awards, and fewer win. The Good Food Award recognizes not only quality of the product itself, but the committment of the producer to source locally, responsibly, without using GMOs.
Bourbon whiskey is recognized as America's native spirit in 1964 but it has been around much longer than that. The term bourbon was first used in the mid-1840s to describe the whiskey coming out of Kentucky coming down the Mississippi to New Orleans. As it was a whiskey based on corn, a grain that grew well in the Kentucky soil.
Nowadays, bourbon isn't restricted to being produced in one geographical locale. While some folks may simply order a truckload of corn from anywhere, at Delaware Phoenix I get my corn from right here in New York. And it's certified organic as well. My bourbon whiskey uses a fairly traditional grain bill of about 70% corn, 13% malted barley, and 18% small grains. These latter grains are usually rye or wheat. In Delaware Phoenix bourbon the small grain currently is organic wheat grown 10 miles down the road from me at the Lucky Dog Organic Farm.
Again my production methods are based on early 19th century ones. These methods are very inefficient in the yield of alcohol but produce a most excellent whiskey if I may be allowed to say so. The whiskey is aged in 25 gallon new charred oak barrels for typically under 12 months (usually about 8 to 10) each barrel is a unique expression combining grain, distillation, oak and storage environment for a rich, deep flavor as bold as the early settlers of Walton!
There is always a limited availability of this whiskey given the great attention to detail and laborious production methods. There may be only four or five of the 25 gallon barrels produced a year. So that's not a lot of bottles. You will not find Delaware Phoenix at every store. So when you see one, you may want to acquire it then rather than waiting until later. You may come back and find out it's gone.