GOSHEN — Straight from the soils of Orange County, two friends are taking drinking local to a whole new level with the creation of their home grown craft distillery.
Bryan Ensall of Fairfax, Va. and John Glebocki of Goshen, recently launched Orange County Distillery — a true farm to bottle operation.
From the ground upThe venture came to light two years ago at a Christmas party. Both Ensall and Glebocki are small business owners. Ensall runs a lawn care franchise, serving Orange County and Glebocki is the owner of J. Glebocki Farms in Goshen, a fifth generation farm.
Having a similar offseason in their businesses, the idea was pitched to start up the distillery in the black dirt region on their spare time.
"John mentioned he had 6,000 pounds of sugar beets that we could make into vodka," Ensall recalled.
Literally starting construction from the ground up, the two guys transformed a run-down 100 year old barn — that was being used for tractor storage and spare parts on the farm — into a distillery.
From the plumbing to a tasting room, Ensall and Glebocki got their hands into everything and transformed their dream into a reality.
The two received their license from the state in late April and were able to start selling liquor in October.
Quality vs. QuantityPriding themselves on quality not quantity, Ensall and Glebocki grow 100 percent of every last ingredient on the farm. The farm encompasses 120 acres, but the pair use about 10 right now to grow sugar beets for vodka and corn, barley and rye to make corn whiskey and bourbon. Gin is also being made. Plans to make rye whiskey and other spirits are on the horizon.
From planting the seeds to fermenting to putting the labels on each bottle, Ensall and Glebocki do everything themselves. And the entire operation is run out of the 1,600 sq. foot barn.
Drink localSince opening up, Orange County Distillery has already started offering their spirits at local establishments including Copper Bottom in Florida, The Landmark in Warwick, Christopher's Bistro in Chester, Nina in Middletown and Blue Hill at Stone Barns in Westchester County and New York City.
Locals can also swing by for a taste and to see the distillery operation and farm lands. The tasting room, located at 19B Maloney Lane in Goshen, is open Monday through Saturday from noon to 5 p.m.
For more information or to purchase spirits visit OrangeCountyDistillery.com or call 845-651-2929.