New Hampshire's Tamworth Distilling claims that its new "Deerslayer" small-batch whiskey is flavored with the state's seasonal "flora and fauna." That's not hyperbole.
The story begins with a three-year-aged white wheat whiskey, which, as with all Tamworth releases, is made in a custom 250-gallon copper still with house-milled grain sourced from surrounding farms and water from the nearby Ossipee Stratified Aquifer.
The experimental spirit maker then infuses the expression with locally-sourced red venison that's fermented overnight with cranberries, porcini mushrooms, juniper berries and green peppercorns before being slow-cooked with "seasoned branches from New Hampshire’s boreal forests." The resulting profile includes notes of savor and smoke alongside a subtle spice.
Whiskey flavored with game meat is wild, but another Tamworth's Eau De Musc is even wilder. The bourbon is blended with castoreum, a pungent oil derived from beaver castor sacs that have historically been used as an ingredient in everything from perfume to schnapps.
Other inventive Tamworth offerings include a traditional Scandanavian spirit flavored with spices and herbs dubbed Skiklubben Aquavit, chicory root vodka, and rye whiskey that's proofed down with Montmorency cherries.
Many of those bottles are only available at a handful of select brick-and-mortar stores, but Deerslayer can be preordered now for $65 on Tamworth's website.