A crisp and satisfying Straight Bourbon with a wheated mash bill that brings on the smooth.
St. Augustine Distillery Co. was founded in 2013 by Philip McDaniel and Mike Diaz as a second chapter to their lives — Philip was a city councilman and Mike an investor. They assemble a group of investors who believed in their vision and purchased the century-old FP&L Ice Plant building to house their fledgling distillery. They brought in Dave Pickerell (Maker’s Mark & WhistlePig) to set things up right. And the formula worked because the business is thriving and they have a slew of Gold Medals decorating the facility.
St. Augustine Florida Straight Bourbon is crafted in batches of sixteen to forty barrels. The mash bill is 60% Florida corn, 22% barley, and 18% Florida wheat. The entire production process takes place on-site at their distillery. Each cask is aged a minimum of three years and the batch is married and brought to proof — which in this case means 44% ABV without chill-filtering. Being a wheated dram, the emphasis is on smoothness. And the relatively high barley content means additional floral notes on the nose. It is a great daily dram.
St. Augustine, Florida, has a claim to being the oldest, continuously inhabited European-style city in North America. It was founded by Spanish admiral Pedro Menéndez de Avilés — Florida’s first governor. His ships saw land on August 28, 1565 (feast day of Saint Augustine). If you count the Caribbean, Santo Domingo (1496) and San Juan (1521) are older.