George Washington and the Ark of Taste

04 Jul 2014

In 1778, General George Washington marked the second anniversary of Independence Day (July 4) with a double ration of rum for his soldiers and an artillery salute. Delving into our Ark of Taste catalog we found two more drinks linked to the first President of the United States…


American Rye Whiskey


Rye whiskey’s transition from an American staple to a relic started with the loss of rye fields during Prohibition, and continued with the rise of imported liquors. Truly an American invention, American Rye Whiskey is only made with American-grown, native rye grains as its primary mash.


When the federal government imposed a tax on distilled liquors during the 1790s, American citizens erupted in outrage over their beloved tipple, going so far as to initiate the Whiskey Rebellion of 1794. President George Washington himself amassed militia members to put down the rebellion in what is considered the United State’s first test in law enforcement.


Interestingly, George Washington maintained a still at his Mount Vernon estate that he used to produce rye whiskey…


Find out more here:


Aged Apple Brandy


Dating back to 1630, aged apple brandy is the original distilled spirit of the American Colonies. It is made by fermenting fresh apples into a hard cider, which is then distilled.


Almost all the knowledge acquired around aged apple brandy production was lost during Prohibition, when between 1920 and 1933 alcohol production and consumption was made illegal in the United States. Thousands of acres of orchards were uprooted to prevent the production of hard cider and brandy. 


The spirit was later distilled by George Washington and Thomas Jefferson. It was also one reason Jonny Appleseed set about the cultivation of apple tree. 


Today, at Mount Vernon, having rebuilt Washington’s house on the property, they are once again producing apple brandy…


Find out more here:



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