Pennsylvania is not only known for producing award-winning brews and wines, but also expertly-crafted distilled spirits, many of which are made with the agriculture grown right here in the Keystone State. Explore one of these craft distilleries while enjoying scenic views of the Pennsylvania landscapes of which they’re made.
Allegheny Distilling is an urban distillery located in Pittsburgh’s historic Strip District and the maker of Maggie’s Farm, the first commercially-available Pennsylvania-made rum since Prohibition. Founded independently, Maggie’s Farm is more about what it isn’t, a corporate entity where marketing gimmicks and bottom lines trump taste and quality. All of their rums and rum liqueurs are made using all-natural ingredients and fermented on-site from American-grown raw cane rather than processed molasses. After long, high-ester fermentations, Allegheny then pot distill all of their rums for maximum body and flavor retention using 100% copper-made stills imported from Spain sitting right behind the distillery’s cocktail bar in Pittsburgh’s historic Strip District.
After distilling became legal in PA in 2012, two retired professors decided they would start making spirits as a hobby. The hobby quickly grew from producing vodka and a few brandies to now offering a bourbon, rye and two gins. Their locally-sourced spirits have won several awards including the Gold Award for their Premium Blue Corn Vodka at the American Craft Spirits Association Awards. Spirit aficionados can take tours of the distillery on Saturdays, as well as sip on some perfectly crafted libations while shooting pool.
Liberty Pole Spirits is a family-owned, small batch distillery committed to producing premium craft whiskeys from locally sourced heritage grains in an American-made pot still. Located in the heart of the 1794 Whiskey Rebellion territory, the distillery is a warmly restored, turn-of-the-century building that offers a cozy spot or two in which to sip their spirits or seasonal cocktails. Tours are offered on Friday evenings and Saturday afternoons. The tour includes a cocktail to enjoy while listening to stories about the Whiskey Rebellion and walking around the production floor and barrel storage. The tour finishes in the colonial style dining room, where guests sample a flight of whiskeys in front of the fireplace.
Pennsylvania Pure Distilleries, makers of award winning Boyd & Blair Potato Vodka, is an independently run American distillery founded on the idea of creating exceptional spirits using locally grown ingredients and packaging. They believe in quality over quantity and that’s why they make every single batch by hand, literally. Boyd & Blair is made batch by batch from original mash using only locally grown Pennsylvania potatoes. Each batch is produced without automation in a 1200 liter copper pot still using only the “hearts” of the run. Every bottle is filled by hand, corked and dipped in wax. And each and every bottle is batch numbered and signed by hand. This is a classic vodka meant to be savored one sip at a time.
Ryan and Sarah Kanto, Bryan Martindale, and the entire crew at Quantum have been hard at work, repurposing the former Steinmetz Bakery in the heart of Carnegie on East Main Street into a distillery and tasting room complete with innovative cocktails and bottles to purchase for at-home consumption. Quantum Spirits Rye Vodka is sublime on its own and plays well with fruit forward drinks, spicy mixers and sweet liquors. Due to the high purity of our product, it is only chill filtered and frequently surprises tasters with how smooth a vodka can be when served neat.
Wigle Whiskey, Pittsburgh’s first distillery since Prohibition, is headquartered in the city’s Strip District neighborhood. Wigle is open to the public for tours, tastings and cocktails seven days a week. Wigle is hell bent on creating a vital, educated community around the highest quality, most inventive, bursting-with-terroir distilled products in the world. Since beginning distilling in December 2011, Wigle Whiskey has worked to restore Pittsburgh’s legacy as the Birthplace of American Whiskey and the epicenter of Rye. Wigle has been the most awarded Craft Whiskey Distillery in the US by the American Craft Spirits Association for four straight years and is a 2018 James Beard Award Semi-Finalist. Wigle makes each of its regionally inspired whiskeys, gins, rum, honey spirits, and bitters from scratch with organic ingredients whenever possible. Wigle never, ever purchases spirits from bulk suppliers.