The Journeyman Distillery has released a new Pit-Spitter Cherry Whiskey inspired by the fresh Michigan cherries often found in farm stands in Harbor Country.
The certified organic and kosher distillery in Three Oaks, Michigan, has added Michigan Montmorency cherries to its best-selling Last Feather Organic Rye Whiskey. Macerated whole cherries are soaked for 30 days in the spirit that features a mashbill of 60% locally produced rye and 40% locally produced wheat.
“We’re not using short cuts like cherry concentrate or flavored syrup,” Journeyman Distiller Matt McClain said. “There’s literally a half-pound of cherries infused into each bottle of spirit.”
After the cherries are removed, Journeyman cuts the strength of the 120-proof spirit by 70-proof by diluting it with water. It adds a little sugar to enhance the flavor.
Journeyman Founder Bill Welter, a Valparaiso native, said it's made with a time-consuming and labor-intensive grain-to-bottle process.
“We wanted to create a cherry spirit that reflects ... of Michigan’s farmlands — not an artificially flavored approximation,” he said.
For now, Journeyman is only selling its Pit-Spitter Cherry Whiskey at the distillery in the historic former corset and buggy whip factory at 109 Generations Drive in Three Oaks.