News & Events

By in Uncategorized Comments Off on Featured Bartender – Patrick Murphy

Featured Bartender – Patrick Murphy

Visit the Trophy Room in Boston for Patrick’s incredible cocktail “Don’t Chai Me” featuring Chai Tea infused Vanilla Rum, Foro amaro, espresso, Thai coconut milk & ‘Elemakule Tiki’ bitters.

Trophy Room  26 Chandler St, Boston, MA 02116

By in Media & Events Comments Off on Vermont Bartender of the Year 2018

Vermont Bartender of the Year 2018

Congratulations Chelsea Harris!

Chelsea beat out 12 bartenders over three rounds of competition. The finals were held at the Copper Grouse in Manchester, VT on April 10th. The winning cocktail featured Revolution Rye.

The “market basket” for the final round consisted of Revolution Rye, Fernet Branca, a coconut, and a choice of four ice cream flavors.

The winning recipe:

1 oz Revolution Rye

1 oz  Cocchi di Torino

.5 oz Coconut Milk

2 barspoons Fernet

Stir ingredients over ice. Strain into a cocktail glass and top with maple blackberry whipped cream.

Maple Blackberry Whipped Cream

3 oz Lulu maple ice cream

3 oz Heavy Cream

6 muddled blackberries

Shake in a cocktail shaker until thick.


Find Chelsea at Pizzeria Verita in Burlington, VT.

By in Media & Events Comments Off on Mad River Distillers Forced To Rename Malvados Apple Brandy

Mad River Distillers Forced To Rename Malvados Apple Brandy

WARREN, Vermont (April 4, 2018) – Sometimes the need to change is inevitable. Other times it is forced by nature. But in this case, Mad River Distillers is choosing to rename its award-winning Malvados apple brandy to both avoid a wicked legal dust up and use the opportunity to enlist the public’s help. The Warren, Vermont distillery was served with a cease-and-desist notice by the French spirits marketing board, who were unimpressed with the small company’s translation skills.

“Malvados means ‘wicked’ in both Spanish and Portuguese,” quipped Mad River founder John Egan. “But we are lovers of brandy, not fighters. To be honest, we never thought we’d become big enough to show up on  their radar.”

Malvados is a traditional-style, dry apple brandy made entirely with native Vermont apples and handcrafted in Mad River Distillers converted horse barn. The company was pleased to receive the ultimate acclaim for the 100 proof brandy in 2016, when it was awarded a Good Food Award for Best Distilled Spirit. The recognition certainly brought the upstart distillery international acclaim, but with the increased profile came the registered piece of mail: change the name or face the legal consequences in court.

“We thought it would be fun to enlist the public’s help with a new name,” said Mimi Buttenheim, President of Mad River Distillers. “So we came up with a nice prize package.”

The winning entry, judged by the Mad River Distillers team, will earn an overnight stay at Hotel Vermont in Burlington, a $200 dinner certificate, and a cocktail flight in the distillery’s eponymous Burlington tasting room.

Entries may be submitted via Facebook, Instagram (@MadRiverDistillers) or via Twitter (@DrinkMRD) and should include the proposed name, as well as the hashtags #true802 and #RenameOurBrandy. The winner will be contacted for a mutually-agreeable prize delivery date. The contest runs from April 6 through April 27, 2018. Transportation to and from Burlington, Vermont for redemption is the responsibility of the winner.

By in Media & Events Comments Off on Featured Bartender- Jarek Mountain

Featured Bartender- Jarek Mountain

Jarek Mountain is the proprietor of Lion’s Tail in Boston

Named one of the hottest new bars in America by Zagat, Lion’s Tail is know for their innovative cocktail menu.

A Cocktail Named Francis” features Mad River Revolution Rye, cognac washed with maple syrup and bacon, punt e mes, allspice, vanilla bean and smoked clove.

Lion’s Tail Boston

Ink Block

354 Harrison Avenue

Boston, MA 02118

By in Uncategorized Comments Off on Win a pair of ski tickets!

Win a pair of ski tickets!

Did you know that March is traditionally the biggest snowfall month of the season in Vermont? 

Do you want to ski for free? Mad River Distillers is giving away pairs of tickets to some of Vermont’s best mountains! 

To win a pair of tickets: 

  1. Follow us on Instagram and Facebook and post your best Mad River Distillers inspiration picture.
  2. Tag Mad River Distillers and your mountain of choice; Sugarbush, Mad River Glen or Okemo
  3. Include the hashtag #true802

 Winners selected on Friday, March 2. Good luck!  

#madeinVT #craftdistilling #skiVT #rideVT #true802 #madrivervalley


By in Media & Events Comments Off on Featured Bartender- Rory Caviness

Featured Bartender- Rory Caviness

Rory is the bar manager at La Voile in Boston, MA, and has worked with the whole Mad River Distillers line of spirits since we debuted in Massachusetts. The Sunset Fire cocktail features Revolution Rye and Tahitian Moon highlights Vanilla Rum. Find Rory on Instagram @50shadesofrory

Tahitian Moon

1.5  oz  Mad River Vanilla Rum

0.5 oz  Lazzaroni Amaretto

0.75 oz lime juice

0.25 oz ginger syrup**

1 dash Angostura bitters

3 drops Bitter Truth Pimento dram

Combine the ingredients above in a cocktail shaker, fill with ice, and shake hard.  Then, fine strain everything in a chilled coupe glass.  Garnish with an edible flower.

**Ginger Syrup – – Mix two parts sugar with one part fresh pressed ginger juice.  Stir until sugar dissolves and bottle.  Add one ounce of high proof vodka to preserve.


Sunset Fire 

1.5 oz Mad River Revolution Rye

0.75 oz Emilio Lustau Amontillado Sherry

0.75 oz Wolfberger Amer Gingembre

2 barspoons Letherbee Fernet

1 tsp cane syrup (2:1)

1 dash Angostura bitters

1 dash Angostura Orange bitters

Combine ingredients above in a mixing glass, add ice, and stir.  Strain into a chilled old fashioned glass.  Garnish with a flamed orange twist and discard the peel.

By in Media & Events Comments Off on Maple Cask Rum in the HuffPo!

Maple Cask Rum in the HuffPo!

Survive Thanksgiving In Style With These 9 Delicious American Spirits


Tony Sachs, Contributor
Writer of words, drinker of booze, eater of food, listener of music, watcher of baseball.
MAD RIVER MAPLE CASK RUM (46% ABV, $43). This Vermont-based distillery has been producing some mighty fine whiskey and rum for more than 1/20th of a century (since 2011, in other words), which actually makes them among the older craft distilleries in the U.S. I’m a fan of their standard First Run Rum as well as their sherry cask-finished PX Rum, but for this particular autumnal holiday, my tipple of choice is their Maple Cask. It’s First Run Rum, distilled from Demerara sugar, and finished in their own used oak barrels. The catch is that the barrels have been borrowed by a local maple syrup producer, who borrows them to age his syrup and then returns them coated with maple goodness. The rum absorbs some of that maple during the finishing process, and the results are delicious. It’s drier and less cloying than you might expect, with oak and a hint of smoke amongst the vanilla and butterscotch notes. Perfect for sipping neat or with an ice cube while arguing politics with various family members at the dining table.
By in Media & Events Comments Off on 2nd Hopscotch Release November 17!

2nd Hopscotch Release November 17!

Mad River Distillers To Release

Second Edition of Hopscotch Vermont Single Malt Whiskey

WARREN, Vermont (October 30, 2017) – Mad River Distillers of Vermont is proud to announce the upcoming release of the second edition of its extremely limited Hopscotch Vermont Single Malt Whiskey on Friday, November 17 at select Vermont and Massachusetts retailers and bars. The second Hopscotch release is the result of collaboration with neighbor and family-operated microbrewery, Stone Corral Brewery.

“For our second batch of Hopscotch, we decided to distill an existing beer from Stone Corral and chose their Scotch Ale for obvious reasons,” explained Alex Hilton, general manager and distiller at Mad River Distillers. “The result is a rich and malt-forward whiskey, much like the beer itself.”

Hopscotch is Vermont’s first single malt whiskey, a collaboration between Mad River Distillers and their brewer partners. For this second edition with Stone Corral Brewery, just less than 700 bottles have been produced and hand-numbered for release.

“We are excited to be working with Mad River Distillers on the Hopscotch project because we believe we share similar philosophies regarding the integrity of ingredients and construction of flavors,” said Bret Hamilton, co-founder of Stone Corral Brewery. “Our Scotch Ale was a natural starting place for us to explore crafting a single malt whiskey together. We really hope people enjoy the synergy and flavors in this unique spirit.”

About Hopscotch’s Second Edition

  • Hopscotch is a supple, flavorful whiskey that bridges the ground between the classic American whiskey style and the smoky tang of traditional Scottish single malts. It was distilled from Stone Corral Scotch Ale, which is brewed with peated malt.
  • Tasting Notes: Tobacco, ale maltiness and a kiss of hop on the palate. Smoky on the finish with flavors of peat.
  • Aged for 18 months and bottled at 92 proof with 46% ABV.
  • Massachusetts release will be 40 cases (240 bottles) of 750ml bottles for $59.99 each and Vermont release will be 75 cases (452 bottles) of 375ml bottles for $39.99 each


Official Release Events

Friday, November 17 from 12 pm to 8 pm.  Burlington Tasting Room, 137 St. Paul St., Burlington, Vermont. Free tastings, drink specials and raffle prizes. Follow the tasting room on Instagram @madriverdistillersBTV and Twitter @DrinkMRD for updates.

Saturday, November 18 from 12 pm to 8 pm. Stone Corral Brewery, 83 Huntington Rd., Richmond, Vermont. Free tastings, drink specials, food and live music by Southtown Bluegrass Band from 7 pm to 10 pm.

Friday, November 24 from 12 noon to 6 pm. Mad River Taste Place, 89 Mad River Green, Waitsfield, VT. Start your holiday shopping at our newest tasting room in the Mad River Valley. Free tastings of Hopscotch, Stone Corral beer, as well as cheese, wine and cider.

By in Media & Events Comments Off on Find your bottle of Burnt Rock Bourbon!

Find your bottle of Burnt Rock Bourbon!

Beginning September 22

In Vermont:

Direct from the distillery tasting room! 137 St. Paul St. Burlington, VT  05401. Hours: Wed. 12-6, Thurs. 12-8, Fri-Sat. 12-10, Sun-Mon. 12-6.

In MA and RI:
MA Restaurants
Troquet on South
Alden and Harlow
Lola 42

MA Retail
Giles Wines and Spirits
Boston Wine Exchange
Falmouth Wine and Spirits
Ball Square
Needham Wine and Spirits
Cambridge Spirits
Pour Richards
Gordon’s Main Street
Hopsters Alley
Wine Emporium
Cambridge Wine and Spirits
Dover Wine Company
City Liquors
Kappy’s Peabody
Kappy’s Danvers
Kappy’s Malden
Kappy’s East Boston
Coolidge Corner Wine & Spirits

Bottles Fine Wine and Spirits
New Harvest
Statesman Tavern

By in Media & Events Comments Off on Mad River’s Newest Release; Burnt Rock Bourbon

Mad River’s Newest Release; Burnt Rock Bourbon


Mad River Distillers to Release Super-Limited Burnt Rock Bourbon on September 19th

WARREN, Vermont (September 5, 2017) – Mad River Distillers of Vermont is proud to announce the distillery’s new Burnt Rock Bourbon will be released in extremely limited quantities on Tuesday, September 19th at select Vermont and Massachusetts retailers and bars.

“We were looking for a different bourbon experience, something spicier with a bit of smoke to it,” said Mimi Buttenheim, Mad River Distillers’ president. “The maple wood smoke allowed us to showcase our Vermont roots.”

Entirely different from the distillery’s flagship four-grain, wheated bourbon (corn, wheat, oats, and barley), Burnt Rock Bourbon is a 12- to 18-month old corn, rye, and maple wood-smoked barley named after a popular hiking trail up Burnt Rock Mountain in Mad River Valley, Vermont.

“We hand-built our smoker from a used steel drum and smoke the malted barley over maple wood from our property at Cold Spring Farm,” said Alex Hilton, general manager and distiller at Mad River Distillers. “The corn we used was grown organically in Vermont, and the rye adds a nice spice element to complement the smoke. As they say, ‘Smoke it if you got it.’”

About Burnt Rock Bourbon

  • Tasting Notes: Sweet maple smoke and cedar with orange spice on the nose and tastes of citrus, caramel, rye, tobacco, and bright herbal notes. The finish is long and chewy – reminiscent of a fine single malt.
  • Bottled at 92 proof with 46% ABV.
  • Each bottle is hand-numbered.
  • Massachusetts release will be 40 cases (240 bottles) of 750ml bottles for $52.99 each and Vermont release will be 75 cases (452 bottles) of 375ml bottles for $39.99 each.
By in Media & Events Comments Off on Mad River Bourbon Featured in Conde Nast Traveler!

Mad River Bourbon Featured in Conde Nast Traveler!

Mad River Distillers Bourbon Whiskey
Made in…Waitsfield, Vermont
“We are lighter than traditional Kentucky bourbons,” says President Mimi Buttenheim, of this northern bourbon that only hit shelves in 2014 but is readily available in New York City now. “I think the bourbon is better, because we have some extreme cold,” she continues. “For only a year old, it has wonderful color and exceptional smoothness. It plays well in an Old Fashioned, but is truly great in a Julep.”


By in Media & Events Comments Off on Mad River Distillers PX Rum Wins Double Gold at 2017 San Francisco World Spirits Competition

Mad River Distillers PX Rum Wins Double Gold at 2017 San Francisco World Spirits Competition

WARREN, Vermont (April 27, 2017) – Mad River Distillers of Vermont is proud to announce the distillery’s PX Rum recently took home a Double Gold Medal at the 2017 San Francisco World Spirits Competition (SFWSC) held April 20-23 at the Hotel Nikko in downtown San Francisco, Calif.


“Our PX Rum is distilled from demerara sugar and then aged in charred and toasted oak barrels before being finished in Pedro Ximenez sherry casks for more than a year,” said Alex Hilton, General Manager at Mad River Distillers. “The result is a smooth sipping rum with nutty and smoky aromas and flavors – perfect for any classic rum cocktail.”


SFWSC is considered the most influential spirits competition in the world. More than 2,100 entries were submitted by craft spirits distilleries, making it the largest in San Francisco World Spirits Competition’s 17-year history. The judging panel was comprised of 43 industry experts including James Beard Award-winning author, David Wondrich, and Jeffrey Morgenthaler, recently named America’s Bartender of the Year and the country’s Best Cocktail and Spirits Writer at the 2016 Spirited Awards.


“Our PX Rum was up against some of the finest spirits in the world,” Hilton said. “Winning a Double Gold medal in San Francisco is a testament to the quality, hard work and – pun aside – spirit of our team here at Mad River Distillers.”

By in Media & Events Comments Off on Fresh: Ideas and Ingredients Behind the Bar in 2017

Fresh: Ideas and Ingredients Behind the Bar in 2017

Celebrate Spring with the VT Sour featuring Revolution Rye!

Our Burlington event, “Fresh,” went off spectacularly on Friday, April 21. Mad River Distillers Burlington, Barr Hill by Caledonia Spirits, and Alice & the Magician teamed up to showcase trends and new techniques in cocktails for 2017.

We asked some of our best friends, favorite bartenders, and all around spirit savvy folks for what they look forward to seeing more of in cocktail culture; what methods, techniques, flavors and tricks currently make Vermont bartenders tick?

Using the inspiration of these bars and bartenders we have created a unique series of craft cocktails to give you a look at what you can expect to see throughout 2017! Think NYC Fashion Week meets Cocktails. A demonstration of exciting new styles and drinks that VT bars are working with.

More recipes here:

By in Media & Events Comments Off on 2017 Press!

2017 Press!

4 Ways Rye Whiskey is Going Against the Grain
The rye whiskey renaissance has led to a new batch of American distillers breaking established rules and foraging ahead with forward-thinking spirits.
Wine Enthusiast 
Published on February 21, 2017


New England Distillers’ Mash Note to Bourbon 
Pioneers stake a claim to the Kentucky-born classic, but going against the grain has its challenges

BY TOM ACITELLI / PHOTOS MICHAEL PIAZZA, To Market Magazine, February 2017

“If you don’t want to taste the grain in the spirit you’re drinking, then drink vodka.” That is Brett Little, co-founder and distiller at Mad River Distillers in Warren, Vermont, a little outside of Burlington.


How Two Back Bay Entrepreneurs Founded a Thriving Distillery (& a Must-Sip Cocktail Recipe  
By Sara Cornell | March 2, 2017 | Food & Drink

Artisanal rum and whiskey whisked one Boston power couple away to…Vermont?

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