I had the pleasure of joining local hospitality industry professionals from the United States Bartenders’ Guild’s Raleigh/Durham/Triangle area chapter yesterday for a tour of Durham Distillery. I was blown away by just how much thought and attention have been put into this beautiful little find in Downtown Durham!
Often when visiting distillery and brewery operations, I find them tucked into warehouse and commercial settings where the rent is affordable and not much is required of aesthetics. Proprietors Melissa and Lee Katrincic have bucked that trend and the former scientists have built an environment perfect for just about anything from date night to Saturday afternoon wanderings in the Bull City.
Located at 711 Washington Street behind the old school Durham Bulls Park (not the DBAP in all its glory of today, but the O.G. one), behind-the-scenes tours and tastings are $15.00 and are offered Saturday afternoons and most Friday evenings, too.
There are a variety of spirited products produced at Durham Distillery including gin (American Dry and Navy Strength), vodka, and even richly-flavorful liqueurs under the “Damn Fine” moniker with flavors like chocolate, coffee, and mocha. These make some tasty dessert cocktails (I love one ounce of the chocolate mixed with one ounce of Glenmorangie 10 year on the rocks), so be sure to pick up one of the beautiful bottles when you see them in your local ABC store.
Visiting on the quick? Shorter appropriately named “quick tours” are offered on Friday evenings from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. and during open Saturday hours from 3 p.m. until 7 p.m. Shorter tours do not include a behind-the-scenes look at the distillery, but they also don’t require a reservation. Simply stop by during the open hours! These tours are $10 and include a tasting flight of five products and a souvenir shot glass. (Sounds like a perfect pre-dinner or DPAC show option to kick off an evening in Durham, doesn’t it?)
PS: They also offer private tours for groups. Inquire within!
I can’t wait to get back over to Durham with a few more friends in tow to make sure to spread the gospel of the small batch spirits coming from this family-owned operation. See y’all there soon!
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