Spirits of the Northwest

Spirits of the Northwest

Article from Northwest Palate Magazine
by Cole Danehower, June 2011

Koenig Distillers

Idaho seems an unlikely location for a small distillery to find success: the state ranks close to the bottom in per capita wine consumption.  But Koenig Winery & Distillery is changing that perception with one of the finest lineups of craft spirits and award-winning wines made anywhere in the Northwest.  

Drawing on an Old World tradition of fruit brandy production, brothers Andy and Greg Koenig saw a future for craft distilling amidst the fruit orchards of the Sunny Slope in southwest Idaho.   Koenig’s fruit brandies reflect the essence of hand-sorted Idaho fruit distilled in German-made copper pot stills and aged in glass carboys for two years before bottling.  Apricot, Pear, Plum and Cherry are the distillery’s standouts, along with a grappa made from local Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, and Zinfandel grapes.

It’s only natural that in Idaho, top-quality vodka is made.  Koenig vodka is distilled in hand-hammered copper pot stills using Rocky Mountain water and prime potatoes.  While vodka itself may not be very exciting, it is a highly popular base for cocktails, and sells very well.  Adding their own twist, Koenig macerates hand-picked, wild huckleberries in vodka and then distills it to produce and elegant, aromatic berry -infused vodka that is turning heads wherever it is tasted, including a bronze medal at teh 2011 San Francisco World Spirits Competition.

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