Iowa's Distinct Spirits:
Micro-Distillery Tour

On the heels of the micro-brewery boom, new micro-distilleries are popping up not just in Iowa but from coast to coast. Outlawed since the Prohibition days, Iowa law changed in 2010 to allow distilleries to offer samples and sell for consumption. Iowa has eight distilleries producing their own distinct spirits.

 

Broadbent Distillery
Norwalk

Nestled away in rural Warren County, Broadbent Distillery calls themselves the smallest "legal" distillery in Iowa using a homemade still to make their spirits.

TAKE A SIP: Two Jays 'n a Silent Third

One part Two Jays Country Style Whiskey
One part triple sec
One part lemon juice
Fill a mason jar with ice and add ingredients. Enjoy!

 

 

Cedar Ridge Vineyards, Winery & Distillery
Swisher

Located a short drive from Cedar Rapids and Iowa City, Cedar Ridge is known for its award-winning wines, but also has a wide selection of esteemed spirits. Iowa's first micro-distillery got its start in 2005.

TAKE A SIP: Sweetheart

1.5 oz. Clearheart Vodka
3/4 oz. Cedar Ridge Laponcella (raspberry cordial)
Juice from half a lemon
3/4 oz. simple syrup
Shake and strain!

 

Dehner Distillery
Clive

This small artisan distillery prides itself on using fresh, all-natural ingredients and only corn grown in Iowa. Owner and operator Joseph Dehner wears his trusty Red Wing-brand boots while creating his spirits.

Take a Sip: Red Boot Corn Whiskey and Red Boot Spiced Whiskey.

 

Iowa Distilling Company
Cumming

Iowa Distilling Company's goal is to bring distilling back to its roots on the family farm. Happily carrying on their tradition, the company prides itself on having local farmers, family and friends help distill every bottle. Enjoy a small-town atmosphere and gaze at the corn fields while you sip.

TAKE A SIP: Iowa Shine-arita

1/4 cup Iowa Shine
1/4 cup high pulp orange juice
1/4 cup triple sec
2 heavy splashes sweet & sour
1/4 lime wedge
Mix ingredients together and squeeze lime wedge and toss in. Pour over a tall glass of ice. Garnish with an orange wedge.

 

 

 

Mississippi River Distilling Company
Le Claire

The Mississippi River Distilling Company purchases farm-fresh grain directly from the farmers who grow it and will give you a tour of the entire spirit-making process. Each of their spirits has a story to go with it based on their relationship with the Mississippi River.

TAKE A SIP: Hot Buttered Cody

2.5 oz. Cody Road Bourbon
6 oz. apple cider
1 tsp. brown sugar
1 tsp. butter
1 cinnamon stick
Dash of nutmeg
Heat Cody Road Bourbon, cider, brown sugar and butter in a saucepan. Pour into a warm mug, add cinnamon stick and nutmeg.

 

 

Sipp'n Sweet Corn Whiskey
Grimes

Chris and Janet McAninch owned a small liquor store in Grimes for several years before deciding they wanted to bring the taste of the Midwest to the world. After years of experimentation, they perfected their whiskey, which has won medals in the International Craft Competition and Washington Cup Spirits Competition.

Take a Sip: Sipp'n Sweet Corn Whiskey

TAKE A SIP: Iowa Sipp'n NightMosa

1 jigger Sipp'n Sweet Corn Whiskey
.5 jigger Grand Marnier
5-6 oz. sweet white Iowa wine
Cherry
In a white wine glass, combine ingredients and garnish with a cherry.

 

 

 

Templeton Rye Distillery
Templeton

The Templeton recipe dates back to the pre-Prohibition era, when whiskey was made on family farms by founder Frank Schroeder. Templeton Rye was known simply as "the good stuff" during Prohibition and was a favorite of Al Capone. Eighty-five years later, Schroeder's great-grandson revived the century-old recipe.

TAKE A SIP: Shirley Templeton

1.5 oz Templeton Rye
4 to 7 oz. lemon lime soda
Touch of grenadine
Fill a highball glass with ice. Add Templeton Rye and fill with lemon lime soda, swirl with grenadine. Garnish with a cherry.

 


Werner Distillery
Holstein

Greg and Karen Brunelle are the proprietors of Werner Distilling and makers of Holstein Rum. Starting off as a hobby, the Brunelle's are working to turn their distillery adventure into a full-time gig.

Take a Sip: Holstein Rum

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