Sub Rosa Spirits is an Oregon craft
distillery producing non-traditional
distillates that carry great intensity and
Our two products are infused vodkas. They are
the yin and yang of Sub Rosa. The first
distillate is a Tarragon infusion that is
delightfully herbal, made with fresh grown
tarragon leaves and a hint of mint. The pale
green color is natural, the flavor is
refreshing. At 90 proof, this baby is the
feminine of the two.
The Saffron infused vodka is intense. As
complex as a gin with 8 spices, this
distillate is beguiling with toasted cumin on
the nose and lemony sweet coriander on the
mid-palate and of course, saffron.
These distillates use fresh ingredients and
darn expensive ones too. Saffron is the most
expensive spice on the planet. No essential
oils were used for flavoring. What you taste
is fresh herbs and spices suspended in
A little side story on the Sub Rosa label you
all might find amusing. Anyone who has gone
for label approval of any alcohol product
from beer to wine to distillates knows what a
pain it can be.
It took over two months to get the labels
through the federal maze this summer. They
didn't like my wording one bit. It seems it
was a bit too mystic, medieval and apothecary
like for them. Here are a few examples:
Proposed wording on the Saffron label: "By
accepting this elixir, you are now part of
the Cadre of Sub Rosa". Rejected: elixirs
are ancient medicinal formulas and can't be
used in reference to alcohol lest anyone
think they can be cured by drinking. I guess
they feared the cadre, the insiders who
joined my cult would either heal themselves
or maybe just overthrow the government.
Compromise: 'By accepting this spirit' 'By
accepting this bottle'
They let the wording 'Welcome to our
fellowship of indulgence' pass with no
objection. I guess hedonism is okay.
Proposed wording on the Tarragon label:
"Light notes of anise that are herbal and
refreshing". Rejected. 'Light' connotes
light alcohol even though it was talking
about a flavor. Can't suggest either lots of
alcohol as in strong or light alcohol. Guess
they missed the 90 proof on the rest of the
label. But Lite Beer is fine? Rejected: And
'refreshing' you can't use that in
conjunction with distilled spirits. It's a
health claim! You can use 'refreshing' on a
beer label, but not a distillate. Who knew.
Proposed wording: "Behind the hidden doors of
Sub Rosa lie hidden truths where ethanol
alchemy and molecular gastronomy meet".
Rejected. Alchemy is the ancient art of not
only turning lead into gold, but also
concocting medicinal formulas. Can't use
that, oh no. Compromise: They finally
accepted 'ethanol divination' instead of
alchemy, but that took them over two weeks to
chew on. Thank god I didn't claim you'd be
clairvoyant too!?!! And what ARE the hidden
I also had to translate all 'foreign' text
used. There is Latin all over the place on
the labels: The first two uses of Latin flew
by with no hiccups.
Sapre Aude - Dare to Think. Have courage to
use your own intelligence.
Quaere verum - Seek the Truth
They did have a problem with my use of the
Olympic Games motto of 'Citius, Altius,
Fortius', which is Latin for "Faster, Higher,
Stronger." I use this on the Saffron label
and it remains as I designed it. The TTB let
this one go, but had many discussions about
it. No doubt feared that the imbiber would
think they could actually run faster, jump
higher and be stronger by drinking the
Saffron infused vodka. Alcohol does do
strange things to people, or rather, people
do strange things after drinking so I guess
that is a legitimate fear. At least they
didn't interpret it to mean that by drinking
this 'strong' 90 proof spirit you would get
'higher, faster'. Oddly enough they didn't
ask about the name Sub Rosa, which is also
Latin for all things secret, private,
confidential, clandestine and covert.
Evidently there are 100 words you can't use
on a liquor label. They can't tell you what
they are unless you use them, then you know.
In the Franz Kafka novel, 'In The Penal
Colony' your crime was engraved into your
back using old Germanic lettering and a huge
arcane engraving device. You didn't know
what your crime was until the engraving
machine had etched it deeply into your
backside a few dozen times. Deciphering
Federal labeling rules was much the same
The whole Sub Rosa idea must have bugged them
to no end. Secret societies; clandestine
meetings. All things under the cover of
night. What is spoken 'under the rose' is
deemed private and confidential. Evidently
mixing ancient rituals and customs with
alcohol treaded too close to subversion or at
least subversive intent. Clearly they had my
The graphics only reinforced the whole
sublime subversion. There are 'emblems' on
the upper half of the bottle that have images
printed on both sides which can be seen
through the distillates. The 'All Seeing Eye'
of the Freemasons is on the Saffron emblem
front side. You can smell insurrection a mile
away on this one. On the backside of the
Tarragon is the 'Eye in Hand' that has been
used in ancient times to ward off evil and to
symbolize the paring of seeing a path of
action and the action of doing something. We
wouldn't want anyone to get the wrong idea
would we?!? And the 'Flaming Heart' on the
front of the Tarragon emblem.
God forbid that anyone distilling alcohol has
a sense of humor much less a subversive bent.
Pushing the boundaries of the TTB cost me an
extra month and a half and no one got in on
the 'fun'. I should have had these products
out by late August. Instead it was the first
week of October by the time everything was
printed and labeled. Being a smart ass has a
price. I pleaded my case and had to dumb
down the text some on the label. Still I
The products are now available in Oregon and
Washington State. The first week they were
out, spirits writer Anthony Dias Blue gave
the Sub Rosa Saffron infused vodka at 93
point rating in the Patterson Report /
Tasting Panel. Tasting great and doing well
has its rewards.
Distiller Mike Sherwood was the first
Executive Director of the Oregon Brewers
Guild back in the mid- 90's. He works for
cult winery, Sineann 6 months a year and
spend as much time on his new distillery as
he can. Sherwood is also a founding member
of the fledgling Oregon Distillers Guild.
Sub Rosa Spirits
The Lone Star State, which
has long claimed national bragging rights for
its picante sauce, mesquite-smoked barbecue
and chicken-fried steak, now boasts no fewer
than three vodka distilleries.
All three vodkas are made in and around
Austin. The distillers hope to tap into the
global thirst for vodka, which is the world's
most popular alcoholic spirit.
Tito's Handmade Vodka, celebrating its 10 th
anniversary this year, is the granddaddy of
the Texas distilleries, with distribution in
all 50 U. S. states and Canada. The other two
distillers, Dripping Springs Texas Vodka and
Savvy Vodka, have only recently gone into
production and have limited distribution in
With so many vodkas from Russia and other
countries to choose from, is there room in
the Lone Star State for three homegrown
Bill Owens, the president of the American
Distilling Institute, says
"The U. S. alcohol business is a $ 49
billion-a-year industry," Owens said.
"Just give them 1 percent."
When Bert Butler Beveridge II, a native of
San Antonio known as "Tito," launched his
vodka label in 1997, he had the only licensed
still in Texas. He sold just 1, 000 cases
that first year; production this year should
come close to 200, 000.
Beveridge (yes, that's his real name ) got
into the spirits business because of his
Christmas spirit. During the Christmas
season, he used to make presents for friends
by blending store-bought vodka with jalapeno,
black cherry and other flavorings. Rebuffed
in an attempt to sell his creations through a
local liquor store, Beveridge told the owner
he might make his own vodka instead.
"He said, 'If you can make it smooth, you
might have something, '" Beveridge recalls.
"I said, ' How do you do that ?' and he said,
'I don't know. You're the guy who wants to
get into the vodka business. You figure it
Beveridge was no ordinary bootlegger. With
degrees in geology and geophysics from the
University of Texas and experience in the oil
patch, he had the scientific and mechanical
ability to make his own pot still. He also
got a federal permit for it.
Beveridge still makes his own stills and
condensers. Like the other two Texas vodka
makers, he starts out with a corn-based,
neutral spirit purchased from an outside
Tito's is distilled at least six times before
it's cut with ordinary Austin, Texas, tap
water filtered at the distillery to bring the
alcohol content down to 40 percent, which is
"We just try to make vodka every day that we
like to drink," Beveridge said. "Fortunately,
my palate's kind of in the bell curve there,
and it just happens to be what a lot of
Like Beveridge, the distillers of Dripping
Springs Texas Vodka also make their spirits
with potstill technology. It's traditional
and popular, featuring a large copper vessel
that holds the raw product, called "mash," as
heat is directly applied.
In all stills, most of the impurities in the
mash escape as boiled-off vapor, which
distillers dub "the angels' share."
Dripping Springs just rolled out in May, but
sales have soared to 3, 000 cases a month,
and they've already increased capacity from
two stills to four.
Unlike some other pot stills that can crank
out 400 gallons or more at a crack, the
copper stills at Dripping Springs only handle
50-gallon, artisanal-sized batches.
"We view distilling very much as a craft,"
said Kevin Kelleher, one of three brothers
who are among the partners at Dripping
Springs. "People sort of throw that around,
but it means different things. You get a
different taste profile when you use
different distilling equipment."
Like Tito's, Dripping Springs sells for $ 14
to $ 18 per bottle, a price point aimed
squarely at the heart of the vodka market.
Savvy Vodka, however, sells for $ 20 to $ 25
per bottle, which puts it in a segment that
includes some of the industry's pricier
Unlike its other Texas competitors, Savvy
refines its product with a column still. Made
out of stainless steel, it rises 20 feet from
floor to ceiling, connected to condensers,
tanks and other apparatus with a maze of
copper tubing. Because it can distill
continuously, rather than heating a single
batch in a pot, a column still can do a more
efficient job of separating the good alcohol
from the bad stuff.
Column stills, however, are harder to run
than pot stills. They're also expensive. So
is the top-quality mash that Savvy uses as
its primary, neutral spirit. And so are the
fancy, acid-etched bottles that hold the
finished product. That's why Savvy typically
has the same price tag as Absolut,
Stolichnaya and other premium labels.
||Fire Near Agave Distillery
Skyrocket Distillery: Distills 100% Blue
Agave, is located in Temecula, Souther
California. The fires came with 1/4 mile of
the distiller and their agave fields. For
more information go to: KRINKIBW.COM
Craft distillers or artisan glass
manufactures we need your help. New Holland
Artisan Spirits is looking for a reputable
glass manufacture to supply unique affordable
glass for its planned distribution of whiskey
Please send any information to
Chief Imagination Officer / President
New Holland Brewing Company
'24 hl Alambic still complete. manufactured
in France Pot, Pre-heater, condenser. For
information contact 831-477-1718'
Successful small distillery with 40K annual
gross revenues and 450 case per year sales.
Retail outlets in 100 out of 163 statewide
stores. Product sells retail in mid-range
for $12 for a 750ml 80 proof bottle. Eight
year operating history. Proven system of
production. Reliable supplies of component
parts. No company debt. Company owns
building where plant operates. Existing
plant capacity is 20K cases per year.
Favorable regulatory environment in state
permits on site retail bottle sales as well
as tasting on premises. Brand only requires
promotion and marketing only to increase
sales. All licenses current, 6 months of
inventory on hand. Current equipment capable
of 20K cases per year.
with additional equipment would be 50K to
100K cases per year. The company is located
in Morgantown, West Virginia, a vibrant
college town and home of West Virginia
University. The plant is located one mile
from interstate 79 with easy shipping and
receiving access. Seeking qualified buyer
to grow company and continue business.
See company website at
West Virginia Distilling Co., LLC
Attn: Payton Fireman
1380 Fenwick Ave.
Morgantown, WV 26505
A& J Whiskey Barrels is now selling new
charred white oak whiskey barrels.cost of
these barrels is
$ 210.00 plus shipping.call (513) 253-8591 or
email us at email@example.com
anytime for orders and
shipping quotes. delivery also
1 Liter round Liquor Bottles, 28 mm screw top
packed necks down in plain Kraft brown boxes
12 per case.
Originally purchased from
Mold number 9935034. $7/case takes all 28 pallets
at 91 cases per pallet. Terms can be
Call Mike at (505) 440
Now out a 110 gallon continual feed still.
--To obtain a
distilled spirits permit go to:
--To obtain TTB list of DSPs go to:
--To obtain TTB statistics on distilling go to:
www.ttb.gov then scroll down to "spirits" and
then the "year".
--To obtain Distilled Spirits Laws and
Regulations go to:
--To obtain label regulations go to:
distilled spirits manual circular.
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