In the world of American whiskey regions, Pennsylvania has historically been considered rye country. It is therefore rather interesting to see a young Pennsylvania distillery launch a wheat-heavy, no-rye bourbon as its first whiskey. A wise choice? The proof is always what’s in the bottle, so here is some information about the new County Seat Spirits Hidden Copper Bourbon.
Hidden Copper Bourbon, according to the distillery, is made up of Pennsylvania corn, Pennsylvania wheat, and malted barley. The whiskey is, like many craft releases, on the young side at just over one year in age. It is also the product of small barrel production, having rested, noted Philly Beer Scene, in 15 gallon, new charred white oak barrels.
County Seat Spirits, for its part, describes itself as a grain-to-glass distillery that’s housed in part of a former truck plant in Allentown, Pennsylvania. Much of the production process is handled onsite. This ranges from recipe development to milling grains with a hammer mill to fermenting the mash in traditional open-top cypress fermentation tanks. Even the bottles that hold the final bourbon are relatively local, having been made in-state as well.
John Rowe and Anthony Brichta are the driving force behind County Seat, with Brichta first formulating the idea after visiting Kings County Distillery in New York a few years back. Rowe, his uncle, is the primary distiller, having retired from a career in air traffic control. It is not clear where his specific distilling experience comes from.
The bourbon produced by Rowe is bottled at a rather mild 90 proof and is pricing under $40 per 750 ml bottle. Its name, Hidden Copper, pays homage to the “historic hiding of the Liberty Bell” in Allentown back in 1777.
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Nino Kilgore-Marchetti is the founder and editor-in-chief of The Whiskey Wash, an award winning whiskey lifestyle website dedicated to informing and entertaining consumers about whisk(e)y on a global level. As a whisk(e)y journalist, expert and judge he has written about the subject extensively, been interviewed in various media outlets and...