Pictured above, on the front doorsteps of the Farmville Courthouse, first row and to the left, is the bootlegeer who had been arrested and handcuffed to the county judge for illegally distilling moonshine in Prince Edward county. In the height of Prohibition, illegal production of moonshine was widespread in Virginia because of the rich farmland and secluded mountain ranges. Prince Edward, along with the surrounding counties, was built around farming and agriculture which provided us the one single ingredient that makes the taste of American Bourbon so distinctive: CORN.
Dating back to 1620, a man from England named George Thorpe may have been the first to distill what we now know as American whiskey. He found that the European barley would not grow well in the American climate, thus leading him to experiment with corn that was given to him by local Native Americans. He wrote in a letter to John Smyth, his business partner, “soe good drinke of Indian corne” that at times was even better than “good stronge Englishe beare.”
Mark Smith, having been brewing beer for over 20 years for personal consumption, felt that the next step was to distill his own products to sell to the public. While filling for a distiller's permit with the TTB and putting a huge deposit on a still that was not permitted to distill spirits yet, he took a big risk. We successfully opened the doors in 2021 as the first legal distillery in Prince Edward County, VA. We still have a long road ahead of us, but we are extremely proud to say we are here.
Owners Mark and Candice Smith both grew up in Saint Maarten, a 36 sq mile island in the East Caribbean, where they initially met and bonded over their love for travel and adventure. They have been able to experience countless different cultures with their own traditions when it comes to distilling spirits. Their love for travel and adventure and taste of food and drink, have led them to honor each culture, with the Spirits that derive from each country they visit. The shipping containers on our property represent exploration of the places we’ve been, representing the imports and exports of the world's diversity and what better way than by taste of spirits . We are striving to bring unique spirits to the heart of Virginia, test the boundaries of traditional products, create and import any and all that taste delectable.
Introducing the Smiths! Mark and Candice have been together for 19 years and built this business from the ground up.
Our spirit guides handcraft every cocktail to perfection. We make our own simple syrups from local herbs and fruits whenever possible and all of our juices are freshly squeezed.
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