Moonshine Moves to the Mainstream as Troy & Sons Moonshine Wins Silver at Prestigious New York International Spirits Competition
by Karen Ramshaw
Asheville, NC — December 2, 2011 — The country cousin of American spirits is moving uptown and taking what we consider to be its rightful place – smack dab in the middle of your local bar back or kitchen table. Beating out whiskeys including Crown Royal XR, Four Roses, Glenlivet and Highland Park made it all worthwhile for distillery owner Troy Ball. "We make a premium product, bringing the best of our mountain heritage to create a truly American spirit – and people love it!"
"We set out to make that rarified kind of moonshine that everyone talked about, but that rarely left the home place. When an eighty year old woman in Marion North Carolina was asked in her local ABC store if she had tried the Troy & Sons Moonshine which she had set up on the counter to buy, she said she sure had and "it's the kind you hide and keep for yourself.' That was when we knew we had gotten it right."
Troy Ball is not your stereotypical moonshiner. First of all, she's a woman, and holds the fourth distiller's permit issued to a woman and the first issued to a woman making 'shine. This mother of three and former national equestrian champion has spent years talking to people in the mountains of North Carolina, and across the south, sharing techniques, and the odd jar or two, as she continued to refine her own product. Troy & Sons uses an American white heirloom corn grown in nearby Old Fort, NC. The farm belonging to John McEntire has been in his family since the early 1800's and the family had protected the strain that was used for cornbread, grits, and perhaps a bit of 'shine "for medicinal purposes". Testing hundreds of batches on friends and family (always happy to help out), Troy discovered that this strain of corn gave her moonshine the secret she needed to create a smooth sipping' white liquor.
Since the first bottles of her moonshine hit the shelves in August of 2011, Troy has been introducing her spirits to a whole new market. "It's been a bit crazy. We've been woking seven days a week both producing product and introducing our moonshine to the world. We've been featured in Garden & Gun Magazine, appeared on a WUNC Moonshine story, won a Silver Medal and had a thousand visitors to the distillery. From Tupelo Honey Cafe and Curate in Asheville to the Courage Awards in LA, and Milk & Honey in New York we have been loved along the way while we are sharing our lovin' kind of moonshine. The response has been overwhelming. I think people are tired of living in a mass-produced homogeneous world and are looking for something authentic and original and great tasting. I know the person who grows the corn, my husband, Charlie, and youngest son, Luke, set up the distillery equipment and Charlie has practically lived there, making sure that each batch is up to our standards. And, as we say here in the mountains, we use the water first. A lot of people try our moonshine because they love the idea, but they buy it because they love the taste. It's been quite the adventure, but the best part is watching people become converts and getting to share another wonderful aspect of our Southern heritage."
Troy and Sons Moonshine is available in North Carolina and in parts of Florida. It also can be ordered online at www.troyandsons.com