Buddha's Hand Citron infused Vodka
Being a Californian, I've been wine-tasting a bunch of times. With Napa, Sonoma, and Russian River Valley about an hour away, it's a fairly easy outing for us. But, for the first time this week, D and I went for a spirit-tasting! D had "scouted" this place out a few weeks ago and recommended we go. My brother recently landed a job at a distillery, so we were just doing a little "research" on the competition (wink).
We went to St. George Spirits on Alameda Island (even closer than Napa - only a 10 minute drive!) home of Hangar 1 vodka. What a cool place!! It's in an old airplane (or blimp?) hangar and it sits right on the NW tip of Alameda with a great view of San Francisco. The distillery itself looks a little Willy Wonka-esque with shiny copper stills and pipes and barrels everywhere. Only windows separate the tasting area from the distilling area.
We tasted vodka, eaux de vies, gin, whiskey, bourbon, liqueur, and absinthe. They teach you how to taste spirits (differently than winei) and we learned so much about different kinds of spirits, it felt a little like liquor school. You can pack a lunch and eat at the picnic tables out front to blunt the effects of the tasting :)
I'm not super into liquor (or wine, for that matter), but it was so fun to do something other than wine taste! So, whether you're a local, visiting from out of town, or a local hosting out-of-towners, this is one cool experience that you should definitely check out - even if you're not a "liquor drinker." You'll feel super-hip. But make an appointment if you want a tour or if you plan on going on the weekend.
Ok, now I sound like a drunk...