Bend Distillery Tour: Part 2
By Julie Swearingen
Posted in Overcup Press, on September 30, 2017
To finish up our tour of Bend distilleries, my best friend, Kathleen, and I visited Cascade Alchemy and Oregon Spirits for some extensive tasting options.
Cascade Alchemy is a small space, tucked in the corner of an industrial park, near a semi well-known bar in Bend. Having missed stopping by earlier in the week, I was dying to try their bourbon, Chai Tea vodka, and Apple Pie vodka.
Tasting: $5 for 6 tastings
Reviews: Kathleen and I were feeling adventurous and decided to try everything. Although I tried some gin at previous stops and was still not a huge fan, Tyler encouraged me to try both of their gin offerings and I am converted. We both loved their signature vodka--and Kathleen isn’t usually a fan--and the Chai Tea and Apple Pie vodka. The Chai Tea smells like fall and winter rolled into one and drinks well at any temp.
Oregon Spirits tasting room is quite different than most: it’s within The Barrel Thief, which in the near-future will be changing from a lounge to a dedicated event space. Some may be confused about the hours they are open, but I highly recommend persevering and making the trip. They offer four to five themed tasting menus--so it’s not a mix-n-match situation--and our pourer explained all four our whiskey offerings in the menu we picked.
Tasting: $8-$12 for 5 (these are larger tastings and can definitely be shared!)
Reviews: We tried the Oregon Spirits Bourbon, Ottis Webber Wheat Whiskey, J. Becher Rye Whiskey, and the Bottled in Bond wheat whiskey. Kathleen likes whiskey and really enjoyed the OSB and JB, while I preferred the OW and BIB--and I am NOT a bourbon or whiskey drinker. I also got a little nip of their Genever Gin. I liked it.
Overall tips: Be open to suggestion, even if you haven’t liked a particular spirit in the past.
We had so much fun sampling the offerings of these local spirit makers. There are more to try in Central Oregon and I can’t wait for my next trip to Bend to check them out. Next up: Distillery Row!
What distilleries are you visiting? Pick up a copy of High-Proof PDX to help plan your distillery tour.