The new Whiskey Rebellion Trail starts where American whiskey was born — the Mid-Atlantic — and cuts through Lancaster County.
The trail launched in July with stops in 75 distilleries and museums from the Pittsburgh area to Philadelphia and south to Washington, D.C. and Baltimore. Lancaster’s stops are Thistle Finch Distillery in Lancaster and Stoll and Wolfe Distillery in Lititz.
“The Mid-Atlantic has been a hotbed of alcohol ingenuity from its start — as the birthplace of Rye Whiskey and home of the 1790s Whiskey Rebellion,” says Meredith Meyer Grelli, founder and chair of the Whiskey Rebellion Trail and owner of Pittsburgh craft distillery Wigle Whiskey.
The trail starts in the Pittsburgh region, where hundreds of farmers challenged a whiskey tax in the 1790s in what is now known as the Whiskey Rebellion.
By the early 1800s, booze was big business in Lancaster County, even as the temperance movement gained steam.
These days, a new type of license in Pennsylvania has lead to a jump in the number of small-batch distillers. The new distilleries combine special ingredients, traditional methods and modern technology. They're also meeting the demand for premium alcohol and locally-made products.
Thistle Finch has straight rye whiskey, plus black coffee rye, black pepper rye and Stoll and Wolfe Distillery just released a three-year rye whiskey.
There are several types of passports to explore the trail. The all-inclusive rebirth annual passport ($359) lasts a year and includes free admission to museums, plus spirits flights and cocktail vouchers at nearly 50 sites.
In Lancaster County, there’s a three-day passport ($17) that includes a cocktail voucher at Thistle Finch and a spirit flight at Stoll and Wolfe.
There are 90-day passports for stops throughout the mid-Atlantic ($169), Baltimore and Washington D.C. ($99) and Pittsburgh ($119).
There are also one-day passports in Washington D.C. ($39), Pittsburgh ($35), Baltimore ($25), Bucks County ($29) and more.