• Announcements

    Award: Spirit Journal Hall of Fame

    September 2014 | Wow! We are hugely honored to have been inducted into the Spirit Journal Hall of Fame, along with fellow inductees Charbay Winery & Distillery, Germain-Robin, and Clear Creek Distillery.

    In the September issue of Spirit Journal, Paul Pacult writes: “These four home-grown distilleries proved to be the pioneering first generation, the trailblazing entities that persevered through the early years of artisanal distilling during the 1980s and early 1990s, when acceptance and recognition for non-mainstream spirits were spotty, at best.

    In 2014, 450 to 500 craft distillers are honing their skills across all 50 of the United States. This remarkable fact alone affirms the notion that (these four distilleries) provided the necessary platform and shone the beacons that guided this vigorous grassroots movement to its current place of influence and impact. The craft distilleries that followed… might not have started up at all weren’t for the legacy of the four new Hall of Fame inductees.”

    This is a tremendous honor from one of the most respected spirits publications in the world. We are humbled and grateful.


    July 2014 | Over the next few months, we’ll be releasing three very special spirits—each distilled, barrel-aged, and bottled by us here at our distillery in Alameda:

    St. George Single Malt Whiskey, Lot 14
    Ours is one of the oldest single malts among American labels—and a real point of pride for the distillery. (1001 Whiskies You Must Taste Before You Die goes so far as to say it “might just be the best U.S. single malt available today.”) Lot 14, our 14th bottling, will contain one of the oldest barrels in our whiskey library—distilled and barreled by Lance Winters in 1999. Dave Smith has blended that 15-year-old beauty with other barrels from our reserves to create an elegant sipping whiskey. As with previous releases of our single malt, ethereal notes of stone fruit, chocolate, and roasted nuts form the backbone of this release’s flavor/aromatic signature. Estimated release: early autumn, about 3,000 bottles.

    St. George California Reserve Agricole Rum
    A barrel-aged expression of our wildly aromatic California agricole rum, but four years in French oak have tempered some of the funk and swagger of the fresh California sugarcane. Enough unmistakable wildness and grassy character remains to be provocative, but it’s balanced by just enough sweetness and spice to make this an approachable sipping rum. Estimated release: mid-autumn, about 2,700 bottles.

    St. George California Reserve Apple Brandy
    We partnered with Eleven Madison Park a couple years back on an unaged apple brandy made exclusively for them and are now getting ready for a national release of a barrel-aged expression (albeit in very limited quantities). Made from a field blend of 15 varieties of Northern California apples, this is a lovely sipping spirit with full apple flavor and soft spice notes derived from two to three years spent in French and American oak. Estimated release: mid-autumn, about 1,500 bottles.

    So… how can you get your hands on these spirits? We’ll let you know when we bottle and start shipping them to our distribution partners in various states. (Watch your inbox, our Twitter feed, and our Facebook page for more info on that—our social media is the best way to stay up on our latest release news.) But please remember that we’re a distillery, not a retailer, and have absolutely no say in what happens to our spirits once they leave the distillery. (Unlike laws in many other states, California state law does not permit distilleries to sell spirits directly to consumers. The onsite store here at the distillery? Nope, not ours. It’s a separate business under independent ownership/management: Head, Hearts & Tails, 510-220-4823.)

    Once we’ve let you know we’ve started shipping, we’d be happy to pass along any information we receive from distributors or retailers—but our hands are tied when it comes to when bottles will become available with individual retailers, whether you’ll be able to pre-order, whether there’ll be bottle limits per customer, etc. We wish we could do more to help everyone who wants a bottle (or six), but heck, we just make the stuff… and are very, very grateful that you’re so interested in drinking it!

    In the works: St. George vodka

    July 2014 | Now that we’ve officially parted ways with Hangar One Vodka (see post below for details), we’re hard at work creating some new vodkas under the St. George banner. For now, that means R&D with fresh California fruit and produce. We’re hoping to release three new vodkas by the end of the year and should have lots more news to share soon.

    Farewell to Hangar One

    April 2014 | Twelve years ago, we created Hangar One Vodka. Four years ago, we sold the brand to Proximo Spirits, but agreed to continue producing Hangar One—for four years. With us so far? Okay then… (Spoiler alert!)

    Yup, our Hangar One production contract has run its course. The time has come for us to bid a bittersweet farewell to Hangar One and a big THANK YOU to all the Hangar One fans out there who

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    have supported us these last 12 years.

    If you’re interested in what’s next for Hangar One Vodka, is your go-to.

    As for us? Our St. George family of gins, absinthe, brandies, liqueurs, and other spirits is keeping us busier than ever. Plus, we have a few new barrel-aged spirits we’re super excited to share with you: St. George Apple Brandy and a barrel-aged expression of our St. George California Agricole Rum should be in your glass by the fall.

    But what about vodka? Will St. George ever make vodka again? Yes. We’re looking forward to the day we can mix Vespers with our own vodka and gin, Black Russians with our own vodka and coffee liqueur, and pear martinis with our own vodka and pear brandy. That delicious day isn’t here yet, but when it finally arrives, trust us, you’ll be the first to know.


    February 2014 | For the fifth year running, St. George founder Jörg Rupf has been honored by the James Beard Foundation with a nomination for Outstanding Wine, Spirits, or Beer Professional. Deemed “the Oscars of the food world” by Time magazine, the James Beard Awards are widely considered to be the highest accolade in American culinary circles—and we’re honored and proud to see Jörg recognized again for his pioneering role in the American craft distilling movement.

    For more on the awards and the full list of 2014 semifinalists, see here.


    February 2014 | St. George Spirits was voted #1 craft distiller in America by a panel of 15 esteemed spirits judges (selected by Thrillist for being “smart people who drink a ton”).

    When the votes were counted, our history as “one of the old-school distillers on the list” and “one of the pioneers of the craft spirits industry”—coupled with our “range of excellent spirits”—landed us the top spot.

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    As the craft spirits segment grows to include many excellent distilleries across the country, we’re honored to have both our heritage and current family of spirits recognized by so many industry professionals.

    Release news: new St. George brandies and liqueurs

    December 2013 | We distilled 120,000 pounds of organic, dry-farmed Bartlett pears this autumn—so we hope y’all are thirsty! Coming soon to a glass near you: St. George Pear Brandy and Spiced Pear Liqueur.

    Pear brandy is actually our flagship spirit—the inspiration for establishing St. George Spirits back in 1982—but we’re about to relaunch our line of brandies and liqueurs (formerly known by the name Aqua Perfecta) under the St. George banner. The new brandies and liqueurs will be available in 750ml bottles (priced smart for bar use) and 200ml bottles (just right for experimentation at home and gift-giving).

    Also on their way: our new St. George Raspberry Brandy and Raspberry Liqueur.

    Our new brandies and liqueurs will start popping up in California just in time for the holidays and will roll out nationally in the new year.

    Excited as we are? Read more about our flagship/brand-spankin’-new fruit spirits here and get in touch if you’d like to find a bottle near you!

    Release news: Lot 13 of St. George Single Malt Whiskey

    August 2013 | Great news, single malt fans! Lot 13 of St. George Single Malt Whiskey has been bottled and is starting to make its way to bars, restaurants, and finer retailers across the land.

    Lot 13 is an elegant blend of 14 barrels of whiskey ranging 4–13.5 years in age. 1001 Whiskies You Must Try Before You Die says that ours “might just be the best U.S. single malt available today,” so needless to say, this is a spirit worth seeking out and treasuring.

    We have started to ship bottles out from the distillery via our distributors and expect Lot 13 to start hitting shelves (in about 20 states total) within the next week or so. This is a very limited release and it will sell out very quickly—in fact, Head, Hearts and Tails (the onsite store at the distillery) has already sold out of its entire allocation due to go-getters calling ahead to place pre-orders. If you’re interested in securing a bottle or two of your own, we advise you to call your favorite retailer(s) now to put in a request. If you need assistance tracking down a bottle in your area, as always, we are happy to help (info(Replace this parenthesis with the @ sign), 510-769-1601).

    Release news: St. George Dry Rye Reposado Gin

    August 2013 | St. George Dry Rye Reposado Gin is a totally new release for us—and great news for whiskey fans, gin fans, and wine fans! To make this singular spirit, we rested our malty, spicy Dry Rye Gin in French and American oak wine casks that previously held Grenache rosé and Syrah.

    Because rye whiskey is the base spirit of our Dry Rye Gin, it lent itself beautifully to some time in barrel (about a year and a half in this case).

    The barrels came from local Blacksmith Cellars, run by winemaker Matt Smith—brother of St. George blender/distiller Dave Smith. We like to think of the resulting elixir as a gift to the gods of whiskey, gin, and wine.

    Serious Eats scored a sneak peak and loved it!

    Our Dry Rye Reposado Gin is a very limited release, so we expect every bottle to be snapped up quickly. Residents of AZ, CA, CO, DC, GA, IL, MA, NV, NY, WA can look to their preferred local liquor stores. Residents of other states can try to score a bottle via mail order. As always, we’d love to help to find some (info(Replace this parenthesis with the @ sign), 510-769-1601).

    Release news: St. George California Agricole Rum

    July 2013 | St. George California Agricole Rum is now available! Formerly known as Agua Libre (the name under which it won a Good Food Award and a gold medal in a Ministry of Rum blind tasting), our rum now has a new name and a new bottle. St. George California Agricole Rum is comparable to some of the finest rhums from Martinique, but made from 100% California sugarcane. If you haven’t already had the chance to try it, get ready for a seriously wild, aromatic spirit. We love this rum in a Hemingway Daiquiri, a Ti Punch, and other classic rum drinks—and Maggie Hoffman of Serious Drinks says it “makes one of the best Cuba Libres I’ve ever tried.

    We crushed ~150,000 pounds of fresh California sugarcane in order to make a batch of St. George California Agricole Rum large enough to distribute nationally. Bottles are now making their way to stores and bars in California, DC, Florida, Illinois, and Oregon—with many more states on the way. If you’re interested in trying it, get in touch (info(Replace this parenthesis with the @ sign), 510-769-1601) so we can help you find a watering hole that can pour you a taste or a retailer that will sell you a bottle of your own.