As luck would have it, two days before we left for Charleston Oregon in our quest for fresh tuna, I was in our local liquor store browsing the rum section. I am actually a wine drinker and I am still familiarizing myself with spirits and cocktails so my forays into a liquor store are usually accompanied by lots of browsing and looking as I am never sure what I need to buy, where it is, or what my options are. This time, my uncertainty was a bonus as I happened to see the rums produced by Stillwagon Distillery.
It was the name that caught my eye. We had been talking about going to the South Slough Estuary off Seven Devils Road in Charleston, so when I saw “The Devil’s Own” I did a double take. Sure enough, it was produced at a micro-distillery off Seven Devils Road, and if I wasn’t mistaken, we would soon be driving right past there!
I had never visited a tasting room for a distillery before, but our trip reminded me of our early forays to go wine tasting, back before wine tasting was really popular. On this trip, after getting our tuna and exploring the estuary, we stopped at Stillwagon Distillery, located down a little driveway. The tasting room and distillery were part of an old workshop (which I learned later, from their brochure, was formerly used to build wooden boats). We were warmly welcomed into the tasting room and then given a tour of the distillery by the owner, Richard Stillwagon. I was surprised by the quality and quantity of spirits which came out of that small workspace. After the tour we settled in for a tasting of the rums — white, “wicked” white (as in very strong), gold, spiced, and dark. It was all very yummy, and I suddenly understood why people enjoy drinking liquor “neat.” Quality spirits do more than just burn your mouth — they have delectable flavors to be enjoyed.
If you’d like to know more about Stillwagon Distillery or want to visit yourself, please see their website: http://stillwagondistillery.com/
Discovering other micro-distilleries is now on my list of things to do. Do you have a favorite distillery in Oregon we should explore?