1712 Miles, 42 Varieties of Corn, 10 States, One Moonshine

The story of Southwind started with an old paddle steamer and two artists, Maxime Berthou and Mark Požlep. They cruised the entire length of the Mississippi River, meeting interesting characters and collecting heaps of local corn. Long hours and miles became stories, and corn became Southwind Moonshine.

Southwind Moonshine is coming out on January 27th and it will be exclusively available to all Flaviaristas. Stay tuned!

According to Mark Twain, no man can tell the Mississippi River what to do, where to go, or to leave some of the letters to the rest of us. The floating diarists sailed the mighty river from La Crescent, Minnesota to the Gulf of Mexico, passing through the states of Wisconsin, Iowa, Illinois, Missouri, Kentucky, Tennessee, Arkansas, Mississippi, and Louisiana.

The 1712-mile journey took them a month and a half after they’d been preparing for two years. The first half of the river is populated by marinas and public piers, while the stream south of St. Louis belongs to nobody, save for cargo ships and gators.


Many towns by the river were flooded, some of them literally flushed away. That year saw the biggest flooding in U.S. history, which forced Mark and Max to find new routes through the riverscape transformed by a disaster. They could find certain spots on the map, only to realize they no longer exist in reality. Many people had to flee, leaving empty houses and past lives for looters to discover. Those that remained had unbelievable stories to share.

The 21-foot boat was like a tiny spaceship in the vastness of the River. So light a pickup could tow it, yet strong enough to defy the gods of Mississippi. Its heart was a relentless and capricious steam engine that threatened to blow up the moment the distracted sailors let the pressure go beyond 160. It was the alchemy of elements that moved the vessel: wood fed the fire, which in turn transformed water into steam; the power that brought about the modern world.

The steamboat would reach up to four miles per hour (or 3.5 knots) and helped its captains break the ice when fishing for new stories. Like a buoyant Trojan horse, it sneaked into guarded and suspicious communities along the River and revealed two curious Europeans with thick accents. Who wouldn’t like to talk to them?

When the loyal boat reached the hullabaloo of New Orleans, it retired and became a floating distillery. After weeks of turning steam into miles, it started turning corn into moonshine - moonshine that tastes like America.

The Cherokee considered corn to be the staff of life, and there’s literally tons of life in America. Almost all of the American corn comes from the vast plains of the Midwest, which is cut in half by the Mississippi River. What used to be the food of the nation is now mostly processed into animal feed and Spirits. Mostly Bourbon, but sometimes - Moonshine.


The sailing artists collected 42 different varieties of corn in ten states along the River. They took samples for science, and dedicated the rest to become Southwind Moonshine.

There are no stories without people, and along the way, Mark & Max met a colorful bunch of characters; from old cowboys to bookish mercenaries. Witness them.

Big white beard, a cowboy hat, and a ponytail were the trademarks of Jim, singer and owner of an antique shop. He led the visitors through the hodgepodge on sale up to the roof where a bonanza of veggies and herbs grew. He gave them fresh tomatoes and frozen pork before he announced he’d be meeting the duo next morning for coffee and life tales.

The abandoned marina behind the sign that demanded drifters to keep out, was patrolled by a diligent lawman. Well, a law-boy, since he wasn’t even ten. He told Max and Mark he was an officer of the law and demanded obedience while he searched and thrashed around the boat. The artists decided to return to the river as the law-boy stood on the bank, smiling victoriously. Nobody messes with the Kid Officer.

High tales or honest-to-god truth, he was a mercenary, he was Opus Dei, he was a Knight Templar. What was certainly real was the AK-47 surrounded by a Glock, a shotgun and an RPG. Black Sabbath riffed as he offered an open bottle of a $1200 Whiskey. He displayed a rare edition of Paradise Lost and a bundle of Cambodian currency. A mysterious man with stories to tell – but then, he’d have to kill you.

The Spirit of America

When the boat moored in the Big Easy, it was turned into a floating distillery. After 50 days and 1712 miles, the 42 sorts of corn were slowly turned into Moonshine. Moonshine! The Spirit of rebellious moonrakers, the homebrew that indirectly brought about NASCAR.

What could be more American than a Spirit that carries the essence of ten states? We rediscovered America and Southwind Moonshine is the legacy of the endeavor.

Country: United States
Region: New Orleans, LA
Age: Less than six months
Distillery: Seven-Three Distilling co.
Style: Corn Whiskey Moonshine
ABV: 50% ABV
Volume 750 ml
Capture the Spirit of America Capture the Spirit of America

Own the Moonshine that carries incredible stories of the Heartland. Take your senses on a boat trip down the Mississippi River. Rediscover America with your palate.

Only 950 bottles available, so act quick!