Six Mile Creek Vineyard creates a locally distilled, Gold Medal Gin!

20130406-143235.jpgSix Mile Creek Vineyard is an often overlooked boutique winery & distillery, located close to downtown Ithaca on Route 79. Beautiful grounds reveal over six acres of white grapes on gently sloping fields, backed up to the Six Mile Creek Gorge. I will say, first off, that I worked at SMC for years, and it is a place close to my heart. The Spirits by Battistella line of production expanded in my time there, and I admit my (now) husband had to retrieve me after a few nights of Gin sample tests. Celler Master and all around awesome wine maker Paul King was most often the caralyst for my blind tastings, and I thoroughly enjoyed the process of highlight and elimination.

Gin by Battistella is made with finished Chardonnay wine as the distillate base. The wine is processed through a small copper pot still, creating a small yield of a very high alcohol product. The pot still method is historical, laborious, and allows for complete quality control by the distiller. A little mini-still is displayed in the tasting room below.
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This high proof base is then infused with a carefully selected recipe of ingredients, ranging from traditional juniper berries to Italian herbs and botanicals. I have had afternoons of working in the winery, with the scent of that Gin wafting up from the cellar below. It’s a clean nose, with hint of citrus, a touch of violet. I miss those afternoons….

Recently, The Fifty Best held a blind tasting of 36 International gins. Battistella was in one of the three flights, of seven gins, each round. I attached the link below so you can investigate as you would like…Six Mile Creek Gin by Battistella was awarded a Gold Medal! Congrats to our local Ithaca boutique distillery!

Gin by Battistella was reviewed by the site as having a palate of “lemongrass, citrus, orange blossom” but also “butterscotch and creamy vanilla.” The use of a finished Chardonnay creates this buttery vanilla character with citrus notes. It is a rare and elegant gin.

Does it sound like you need to try this delicious treat? It’s only sold out of the SMC tasting room, with very little distribution locally. These small batches of gin are produced in a very labor intensive and time consuming process, creating a small amount of product each run. Local distilleries are springing up all over, and even more wineries are starting to invest in running a tandem distillery. Have you tried any locally produced spirits? What are YOUR favorites?

Check out the full Gin Tasting HERE: The Fifty Best-gin

Tattoos, booze, and shoes.

I love wine. I love booze of all types, actually. I love tattoos. I love my husband…and, like many women, I love shoes.

The infamous shoes my tattoo artist boyfriend scored for me in San Francisco.

My husband bought me a pair of patent leather platforms, back when he was my constantly traveling tattoo artist boyfriend. We met in NYC, he tattooed me for six months, and then the fun really began. I had my own personal tour guide, taking me to unmarked sake bars, hidden cocktail lounges, and spots only known to the seasoned underground local. I was ready for an adventure…and what I found was more. I found love, I found community, and I found an appreciation for the finer things in life…

I fell in love with my tattoo artist boyfriend, and we soon moved out of the big city to greener pastures. Not a retirement, but a rejuvenation. We needed a change. Somewhere we could be inspired, a place that we could call our own for a bit.

Ithaca, Ny was where we landed in 2007. There are waterfalls, trees, farms, and vineyards here. It is a beautiful place. My husband and I opened The Hand of Fate Tattoo Parlor on October 13, 2007. Once the business was up and running, I fell ass first into what would soon become my newest foray, and my new passion; I was hired at a local winery.