West Overton fundraiser guests will taste long-awaited rye distilled on site

Guests at West Overton Village and Museums’ upcoming fundraising dinner will be among the first to sample the long-awaited rye whiskey distilled on site.

Dinner is scheduled from 5 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on November 5 at the East Huntingdon Historical Complex.

It has been over 100 years since whiskey was distilled in West Overton. The current West Overton distillation project has been underway for over a decade.

“We use a traditional Monongahela style sweet mash made with 80% rye and 20% malted barley, we never add corn, we barrel it to a low entry proof of 110 and age our barrels. in a temperature-controlled space, “said Aleasha. Monroe, COO of West Overton.” This process brings us as close as possible (at this point in our distillation journey) to how the Overholts used to make their whiskey. in the 1800s. ”

Elegant Catering will serve a menu including a poached pear salad, Rockefeller oysters and tenderloin medallion, or chicken breast stuffed with broccoli and mushrooms served au jus, tricolor fingerlings mashed with duck fat and green beans.

The distillers featured in the tasting flight of four samples of Pennsylvania rye whiskeys will be Old Overholt, Dad’s Hat, Liberty Pole, Stoll & Wolfe and West Overton Distilling.

The Nov. 5 benefit will also feature an expert panel examining the history and future of Pennsylvania rye whiskey.

Four panelists will address the specific question: “What exactly defines Pennsylvania Rye Whiskey?” Their discussion will begin with subsistence farming in the early 1800s and move through the dry years of Prohibition to today.

“Is the makings of a PA Rye that of taste, mash bill, terroir, provenance or maybe even marketing? Who decides ? We will resolve this debate once and for all (or at least we will get out), ”Monroe said.

Panelists will include:

• David Wondrich is widely hailed as one of the world’s foremost authorities on cocktail history and one of the founders of the modern craft cocktail movement. Wondrich is a senior drink columnist for the Daily Beast and a former drink correspondent for Esquire.

• Lew Bryson has been writing full-time on beer and spirits since 1995. Former editor-in-chief of Whiskey Advocate magazine, he is currently senior drink editor for The Daily Beast and columnist for Craft Spirits magazine.

• Steve Bashore is Director of Historic Crafts at George Washington’s Mount Vernon, overseeing the interpretation, operations and maintenance of the Washington Distillery, Mill, and Farm and Forge. A miller and traditional distiller by trade, he has been distilling in the reconstructed Washington distillery since 2007.

• Sam Komlénic, a native of Ruffs Dale and Pennsylvania whiskey historian, was editor of Whiskey Advocate magazine for 15 years and is an inaugural member of the Order in Council of the Kentucky Distillers Association.

Dinner attendees must be 21 years of age or older. A ticket costs $ 150 and must be purchased in advance. Following the fundraiser, West Overton Distilling Monongahela Rye will be available in the West Overton tasting room during normal visiting hours. The 375 milliliter (12.7 ounce) bottle will retail for $ 50.

For reservations or more information on West Overton hours of operation and tours, visit westovertonvillage.org.

Shirley McMarlin is a writer for Tribune-Review. You can contact Shirley at 724-836-5750, [email protected] or via Twitter .

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