Updated 10/05/2012 06:26 PM
Distillery opens in downtown Albany
Albany's first licensed distillery since the beginning of Prohibition officially opens its doors. Our Erin Connolly has more on this historic launch.
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ALBANY, N.Y. -- Everyone was in good spirits at the opening of the first and only distillery in the City of Albany in nearly 80 years. Whiskey on the rocks, mixed in a drink or by the bottle was on tap. Located downtown next to the Albany Pump Station, the Albany Distilling Company, or ADC, is the brainchild of young entrepreneurs John Curtin and Matthew Jager.
Curtin said, “We both like spirits. We're both heavy in the cocktail culture so it was a great match.”
Matthew Jager, the co-owner of Albany Distilling Company said, “I'm realizing now this is the proudest day of my life.”
ADC was made possible by the passage of the New York State Farm Distillery Law in 2007. Two years ago, the pair applied for a state license for distilling and the rest is history.
Curtin said, “It feels great. I think it's been a long time in the works. Historically, there was a distillery here almost 300 years ago, one of the first businesses in Albany and I'm really happy to be bringing that tradition back to the city.”
Friday, ADC unveiled its first product, the Coal Yard Distiller's Series New Make Whiskey. Most of the ingredients for the clear whiskey will be sourced locally in New York State. It'll be available at a number of Capital Region stores, restaurants and bars.
Tess Collins, the manager of McGeary's Pub, said, “I've been excited all week about it. I wrote them a check and I'm bringing five bottles up to the bar right now.”
State Senator Neil Breslin said, "When we come together we can make it happen and when we make it happen two people like John and Matt are able to succeed.”
And the co-owners hope their success starts a trend that puts local distilleries back on the map.
Curtin said, “I feel like the rising tide floats all ships. I'd love to see one in Troy, one in Schenectady, just pop up all over the place.”
The tasting room here will be open Tuesday nights from 4 to 8 p.m., Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. or by appointment.