By Christine Felton
Austin and the nearby Texas Hill Country are home to a spirited number of distilleries that are destinations in themselves. Stop in for a pour at an urban tasting room or set off on a Hill Country day trip. Here are 14 local craft spirits distilleries to explore:
1. DESERT DOOR DISTILLERY
Desert Door Distillery
in Driftwood is the country’s only sotol distillery, crafting a distinctive Texan spirit. Unique to Texas and northern Mexico, the rugged sotol plant thrives in the desert. Do some sotol sampling in the modern Tasting Room (try the earthy Desert Door Original), then cozy up by the fireplace on a comfy couch surrounded by regional artwork. Or take an afternoon tour Friday through Sunday.
2. GARRISON BROTHERS DISTILLERY
Garrison Brothers Distillery
in scenic Hye is the Lone Star State’s first and oldest whiskey distillery. Located on a small ranch, Garrison produces Texas Straight Bourbon Whiskey made with its own organic winter wheat that’s grown and ground daily on site, along with plump yellow corn from the Texas Panhandle and fresh Hill Country rainwater. Take the one-hour Sit and Sip tour (Wednesday through Sunday), which includes a taste of sweet mash and high-proof “white dog” right from the stills, along with samples of Garrison’s latest limited-release whiskey.Courtesy of Treaty Oak Distilling.
3. TREATY OAK DISTILLING
Located in Dripping Springs, Treaty Oak Distilling
is named for the 500-year-old live oak tree in Austin that was the site where Stephen F. Austin (known as the "Father of Texas") signed a border agreement in the 1830s. Treaty Oak produces a number of spirits, including gin and bourbon, on its 28-acre, state-of-the-art distillery/ranch. Head out on the weekend to enjoy Saturday afternoon tours, live music, yard games, tastings at the Cocktail Lab and a gourmet bite from the on-site Alice’s Restaurant.
4. DRIPPING SPRINGS VODKA AND GIN
Dripping Springs Vodka and Gin
, also found in Dripping Springs, produces its spirits in handmade copper pot stills. Brothers Gary and Kevin Kelleher founded the San Luis Spirits distillery, where they produce small 50-gallon batches of Dripping Springs vodka and gin using pure Hill Country artesian spring water. Tours are held Thursday through Saturday afternoons, and include a distillery tour, tastings and a souvenir shot glass.Still Austin Whiskey Co. Credit Danielle Chloe Potts.
Posted by: Visit Austin
Posted on: 13/01/2020