Kings County Distillery’s Straight Bourbon is made from New York State 80% organic corn and 20% English malted barley, is twice distilled in copper pot stills and then aged in new charred oak barrels. Rich in caramel, vanilla, and holiday spice, this bottle is cited frequently in lists of best non-Kentucky bourbons. Aged for at least two years, this is a precocious whiskey, surprisingly robust for its age.
San Francisco World Spirits Competition: double-gold 2019, gold 2017, bronze 2018. ADI Craft Spirit Awards: silver medal 2013 and 2014 (Best in Category), 2012, 2017, 2019, bronze 2018. ACSA Awards: silver medals (2) 2014, 2016, 2019; bronze 2017, 2018.
“Crisp Demerara sugar; sumptuous texture, aided by melt-in-the-mouth natural caramels; an excellent outpouring of citrus-tinged vanilla; for a year-old bourbon the sugars have accumulated charmingly (89=excellent).” – Jim Murray’s Whiskey Bible 2013 “Exotic and deep, with flavors of grain, licorice, vanilla and molasses.” (#2 Craft Bourbon, 3-Stars) — Eric Asimov, New York Times 2014. “Top Ten Bourbons” —Time Out New York, 2014
What is Peated Bourbon? It’s bourbon whiskey that conforms to the American requirements for bourbon but is made with malted barley that has been exposed to peat smoke, a practice more common in Scotch whiskies—the malt we use for the peated bourbon was even grown and kilned in Scotland. So it’s a hybrid whiskey of the two traditions, flavorful and robust from having aged in a new barrel, with an added light smoky finish reminiscent of single-malt. If scotch and bourbon had a baby, this is what it would taste like. As far as we can tell, ours was the world’s first ever peated bourbon and will appeal to the adventurous whiskey traveler who has tried everything.
San Francisco World Spirits Competition: Double-Gold 2016, gold 2016, silver 2019, bronze 2018. Intl. Whisky Competition: silver 2017. ADI Awards: silver medal 2016, 2017, 2018, bronze 2019. ACSA Awards: gold 2019, silver 2018, bronze 2016, 2017.
“The dram is salt-forward from start to finish, interspersed with rich bursts of flavor. Hot rubber, pretzels, slightly bitter baker’s chocolate, warm leather, and hard candies define the palate…peat is not a primary element, but it is clear that this is an exceptionally complex spirit.”—Whiskey Wash (93) “Quite stunningly lovely.” (94=Superstar whiskies that all give us a reason to live) Jim Murray’s Whiskey Bible, 2017
Single Malt Whiskey
Our Single Malt Whiskey is made almost entirely like a single malt scotch—except that instead of being made in Scotland, it’s made here in Brooklyn. Kings County Distillery’s single malt whiskey is open-fermented off the grain from malted barley (with a hint of peat) sourced from England and Scotland. The whiskey is twice distilled in traditional Scottish pot stills, then aged in our own used bourbon barrels anywhere from 1.5 to 4 years. With a higher post-cask strength than our American-style offerings, this whiskey warranted a higher bottling strength—47%—and so it is more potent than its palate would suggest. Dry and sophisticated, it is an elegant whiskey with notes of honey, hay, burnt orange peel, and peat. It is a perfect addition to your shelves.
ACSA Craft Spirit Awards, Gold 2016, San Francisco World Spirits Competition, silver 2019, bronze 2016, 2017, ADI Craft Spirit Awards, silver, 2019, bronze 2016, 2017.
Barrel Strength Bourbon
Clocking in at 116-128 proof depending on the batch, Kings County Barrel-Strength Bourbon is pulled from older barrels than our flagship bourbon, aged any where from two to almost five+ years. Many enthusiasts prefer whskey straight from the barrel, which allows the drinker to add ice or water to taste. Smooth and bold, this is our most flavorful and intense whiskey. Wine and Spirits magazine awarded it Best Bourbon of 2015.
San Francisco World Spirits Competition: silver 2019, 2018, 2017, bronze 2016. ACSA Awards: Gold medal 2016, Best in Category Bourbon, silver 2019. ADI Craft Spirits Awards: bronze 2016, 2018.
“Of all the craft distillers in the nation, none makes bourbon more delicious than Kings County”— Wine and Spirits Magazine 2015 (Spirit of the Year).
Kings County is among the very first craft distillers to release a style of whiskey that can be considered the highest class of American Whiskey. Bottled-in-Bond is a designation that refers to American whiskeys (and some brandies) that are distilled, aged, and bottled entirely at one distillery, from barrels filled in one season, by one distiller. Furthermore, the whiskey must be four years old and bottled at precisely 100 proof. In the old days, this was a way to protect the consumer from brands that were merely bottling up whiskey from other distilleries and blending or adulterating that whiskey. In an era when consumers still sometimes have a hard time knowing exactly where their whiskeys actually come from, bottled-in-bond best expresses the advantages we enjoy by making all our whiskey in-house from grain to bottle. Highly allocated but available everywhere.
San Francisco World Spirits Competition, Best-in-Category (Small Batch Bourbon under 5 years), double-gold, 2017, silver 2018, 2019. International Whisky Competition, Best American Whisky, Best Bourbon, Best Small Batch Bourbon, Best Bourbon 4+ Years, gold (4) 2017. ADI, gold 2019, silver 2017, bronze 2018. ACSA, gold 2019, bronze 2017, 2018.
Empire Rye Whiskey
Part of a broader project with other New York distillers, Kings County Empire Rye whiskey is made from 80% New York grown Danko rye and 20% english barley malt and is aged 2 years in charred oak barrels. With notes of cinnamon, nutmeg, maple, mint, and cut grass with a finish of warm bread and holiday spice, this is a more flavorful rye than some of its commercial peers. Released at 102 proof, this is a potent entry into a much-loved category.
San Francisco World Spirits Competition: double-gold, 2019, silver 2018. ACSA Awards: gold 2018, bronze 2019. ADI Awards: bronze 2018.
“An alluring and inviting nose promises sweet tea, mint, dill, and a full Thanksgiving dessert spread. The palate delivers, with flavors of blueberry crumble, cherry tart, and candied ginger….a warm, spicy, and rounded finish helps bring the whiskey home.” —Whiskey Advocate
Before “white whiskey,” there was moonshine, otherwise known as whiskey before it is aged in a barrel—though the word can also mean any illegally-made spirit. Ours is a corn whiskey made from 80% New York State organic corn and 20% malted barley. It is double distilled and reduced to a smooth, drinkable 80 proof. Bright with a sweet slap of corn, this is our take on a classic American whiskey.
ADI Craft Spirit Awards: Best in Category 2011, gold medal 2014 (packaging), silver medal 2013, 2017; bronze medal 2012, 2016. ACSA: bronze medal 2015, 2016.
“Absolutely spot on corn whiskey; sweet, clean, berry-fruit, very well made and does exactly what it says on the tin (92=brilliant).” – Jim Murray’s Whiskey Bible 2013 & rescored (no change) 2017
Kings County’s Chocolate Whiskey infuses our Moonshine with ground cacao bean husks from Raaka Chocolate, whose factory is in Red Hook. Bitter and surprising, this rich whiskey tastes like dark chocolate and works great in cocktails or on its own as an after-dinner drink.
“Six Flavored Whiskeys to Try” Whiskey Advocate 2017. “Exceptional… exquisite… I didn’t know I needed a chocolate whiskey until I sampled some during a tour.” — Cocktails & Cologne. “Rich, with a nice mix of sweet and savory flavors.” — Uncrate
Winter Spice Whiskey
Our fall/winter seasonal release is an infusion of baking spices associated with mulled cider, hot toddies, and holidays with family and friends. Using cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, allspice, black peppercorns, clove, and star anise, this whiskey is a bold but balanced answer to some of the cinnamon-flavored offerings from bigger distilleries that aim for a broader audience. Perfect for cocktails that like a spicy cinnamon kick (we suggest egg nog), this whiskey is designed for crisp, cool weather.
These gift sets offer all three of our main whiskies in 200ml bottles, packaged in a handsome wooden box made just for us down the street in Brooklyn. The box has a burned-in image of the paymaster building from the 1900s. 5-bottle sets are also available from select retailers with the moonshine, bourbon, chocolate, peated bourbon and limited edition seasonal whiskeys.