Half Moon Orchard Gin is named for the sailing ship "Half-Moon" captained by Henry Hudson in exploring what would become the Hudson River. The base of the gin uses both a wheat grain and apples, making it in our minds a kind of blend of classic Russian vodka and apple eau-de-vie (un-aged brandy) as the base... a very unusual spirit. It is then infused with botanicals in the classic London Dry style for a juniper forward flavor.
Tuthilltown Spirits was founded in 2001 on the site of Tuthilltown Gristmill, which had been grinding grain to flour using the local river as power for over 220 years. Ralph Erenzo and Vicki Morgan purchased the property and put a microdistillery on the site. We were told that they at first wanted to make a world-class climbing facility over the rocky terrain but that local opposition squelched the idea and they had to something else... and that something else turned into spirits. They first produced a vodka two years later. Since that time they have expanded into several spirits and hope to renew the pre-Prohibition New York spirit of craft-distilling. Tuthilltown's Hudson Whiskey brand was acquired by Willaim Grant & Sons in 2010.