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Green Hat Distilled Gin

Green Hat Gin

News & Press.

To help, at least in a small way, we are donating $1 from every, single cocktail we […]

Today is the day we get to introduce you to Old Tom. We are excited to release […]

Friday, August 4th: “Art of Engagement” at Touchstone Gallery A conversation using the universal language of art about today’s important […]

We can hardly contain our excitement over our upcoming release of our Old Tom Gin. This is […]

We are keeping the momentum of summer going with another debut; our Old Tom Gin. This is […]

View All Items

The Man in the GREEN HAT Washington Bootlegger, Whistleblower, History Maker

When George Cassiday returned from World War I, he needed a job. With the nation gripped by Prohibition, a friend suggested he try supplying bootleg liquor on Capitol Hill. Word spread quickly and Cassiday soon had a number of Congressmen — “wet” and “dry” — as clients.

By 1920 Cassiday went “in-house” with an office in the basement of the House Office Building to supply thirsty lawmakers. On one of his train trips back from NYC with “supplies,” Cassiday set his suitcase down a bit too hard and broke several bottles. A fellow traveler said, “Say, buddy, your clothes are leaking.” The Feds weren’t there to see the spill … but his luck wouldn’t hold much longer.

Eventually word about Cassiday’s cozy setup got out and in 1925 the Capitol Police caught him carrying booze into the Cannon Building. The dapper Cassiday was arrested wearing his signature green felt hat, earning him the moniker “The Man in the Green Hat.” Banned from the House, Cassiday promptly moved his operation to the Senate Office Building.

Cassiday found senators more discreet than their House colleagues, using a page or staffer to make the deal. But the feds caught on and in early 1930 Cassiday was arrested in the Senate parking lot with 6 bottles of gin. But he never spent a night in jail — courtesy, we suspect, of his long-time Capitol Hill friends.

A week before a crucial mid-term election in 1930, Cassiday wrote a series of front page articles for the Washington Post. “The Man in the Green Hat” detailed his 10-year career supplying bootleg liquor to 4 out of 5 lawmakers — and exposed the hypocrisy of a Congress flaunting the rules it imposed on America. The voters threw out the “dry” majority and set the nation on the path to Repeal!

 

Many thanks to Garrett Peck, Prohibition in Washington, D.C. — How Dry We Weren’t and the website of the US Senate Historical Office.



DC: Prohibition's Capital City

Washington had a special place in Prohibition history. New York and Chicago get all the notoriety because of organized crime warfare, but as is the case today, Washington was a little more discreet in its excesses—and never grew a local bootlegging mob. Read about our gin’s namesake, The Man in the Green Hat, the 1920s Bootlegger to Congress.

A few more DC Prohibition facts:

  • Since the District was even more of a Congressional fiefdom in the early 20th century, Prohibition started here earlier and lasted longer than the national ban. It began more than 2 years early in Nov. 1917 and ended 3 months late in March 1934. The Washington Post wrote, “Somehow or another, despite 17 years without it, Washingtonians seemed to hold their liquor quite well.”
  • Prohibition saw the rise of U Street, the “Black Broadway,” with the Lincoln and Howard Theatres, Club Bengazi, and Ellington, Armstrong, Fitzgerald and Calloway headlining a Jazz Age and speakeasy culture that rivaled the Harlem Renaissance.
  • Amateur entrepreneurs thrived under Prohibition … if they avoided jail. Before Prohibition in 1917 there were only 267 bar-rooms licensed in DC, but in 1931 alone, 1155 speakeasies were busted. One well-known speakeasy was the Tune-Inn on Pennsylvania Ave SE. During Prohibition it was a candy store, a fitting front for the real sweets in the basement.
  • If you wanted a quality drink, you got yourself invited to an embassy party. The embassies and their staffs were exempt from the Volstead Act and were able to get supplies shipped from their home countries.
  • Short Film about George Cassiday

Want to know more about Prohibition in DC? Go on one of Garrett Peck’s Prohibition Tours and check out his book, Prohibition in Washington, D.C. — How Dry We Weren’t.


The Craft is Professional THE PASSION IS PERSONAL

New Columbia Distillers is a family business owned by Michael Lowe and his wife, Melissa Kroning and John Uselton and his wife, Elizabeth Lowe.

John and Michael come to their passion for craft distilling by wearing many hats in the restaurant and liquor business—not to mention the military and legal worlds. From Houston to Boston to Washington, John has worked in all capacities of front-of-house restaurant work—from humble busboy to award-winning bar- tender to savvy manager. Michael spent a couple of years on a Navy submarine and a few more at private DC law firms. He retired from the law in 2008, bought himself several cocktail books and started investigating the art and science of distilling.

In 2011 John and Michael were the first to bring craft distilling to DC. After a brief apprenticeship with Dry Fly Distillery, they located a home for their distillery in a 90-year-old warehouse near the Art Deco landmark Hecht Co. warehouse on New York Ave. When they learned the history of The Man In The Green Hat, they knew they had a name for DC’s own signature gin.



A Blend of STYLE and SUBSTANCE

Our gin is a truly unique artisanal spirit. Each batch of Green Hat Gin is crafted in our small DC distillery. The result is a super-premium gin that excels both in the finest cocktails and with a small cube in the gin-lover’s neat glass.

We mill the highest quality soft winter wheat fresh for each batch and mash it in a temperature-controlled process to release the sugars needed for fermentation. The mash is then fermented to create the “beer” that feeds our distillation process.

After being concentrated and clarified in our traditional copper pot still, two more distillations transform the crystal spirit into a refined and gently aromatic gin. In the final distillation, we suspend our hand-selected botanicals inside the still to allow passing spirit vapors to gently extract the right flavor and scent notes.

Finished with chill filtering and bottled by hand at the distillery, Green Hat Gin is a Washington original. Cheers!

Distilled by Hand from 100% Grain and Select Botanicals in Small Batches in a Copper Pot Still. This classic spirit is the modern gentleman’s perfect life-style accessory.

Hand-made from grain to glass, each numbered batch of Green Hat Gin is crafted step-by-step over a one month period, featuring a clear juniper nose, hints of citrus lightness and coriander spice, a vague recollection of root botanical earthiness, a subtle note of grains of paradise pepperiness, an herbal whisper of celery, and a rewarding complexity. The result is a super-premium gin that excels both in the finest cocktails and with a small cube in the gin-lover’s neat glass.

Distilled by Hand from 100% Grain and Select Botanicals in Small Batches in a Copper Pot Still. This limited edition gin is the essential seasonal addition to your bar.

Hand-made from grain to glass, this seasonal edition of Green Hat Gin is a unique expression of gin, featuring a clear juniper nose, floral cherry blossom and clover notes, the aromas of sun-baked rosemary, and a bright zestiness from fresh citrus. The result is a seasonally appropriate super-premium gin that makes a worthy limited addition to a gin-lover’s bar.

Distilled by Hand from 100% Grain and Select Botanicals in Small Batches in a Copper Pot Still. This limited edition gin is the essential seasonal addition to your bar.

Hand-made from grain to glass, this seasonal edition of Green Hat Gin is a unique expression of gin, featuring the distinct scent of juniper, powerful earthy notes of caraway and rye grain, exotic spicing and the mellowness that only barrel aging brings. The result is a seasonally appropriate super-premium gin that makes a worthy limited addition to a gin-lover’s bar.

Summer Cups (or Summer Fruit Cups, or Fruit Cups) are a traditional British gin-based drink. There’s a famous brand that starts with a ‘P,’ but in our minds there should be a lot more than what’s out there. Made by infusing our Navy Strength gin with tons of citrus, rosehips, cucumber, black tea, verbena, lavender and other herbs and spices, the spirit is then combined with Capitoline White Vermouth and lightly sweetened. The result is a bright, complex mixer that’s perfect with lemonade or ginger ale–just add some fruit and cucumbers for a classic cup!

THE CLASSICS Gin Cocktails.

the Classic

Ingredients

  • Green Hat Gin 2 1/2 oz
  • Capitoline Dry Vermouth 1/4 oz
  • green olive/a twist of lemon peel
  • ice cubes 6

Directions
Into a mixing glass, toss a handful of ice cubes, then pour in the Gin and the Vermouth. Stir well. Strain and pour into a martini glass. To finish, either drop a green olive into the bottom of the martini glass OR arrange a twist of lemon peel on the edge of the martini glass.

the Rickey

Ingredients

  • Green Hat Gin 1 1/2 oz
  • fresh lime 1/2
  • handful of ice
  • carbonated water or club soda

Directions
Add ice to a highball glass. Squeeze in lime juice and drop in half of lime. Add gin and top off with club soda.

the Fresh Gimlet

Ingredients

  • Green Hat Gin 2 oz
  • fresh lime juice 1/2 oz
  • simple syrup 1/4 oz

Directions
Shake with ice and strain into a cocktail glass. May also be served on the rocks, if preferred. Garnish with a lime twist.

the Pegu Club

Ingredients

  • Green Hat Gin 2 1/2 oz
  • orange Curacao 1/2 oz
  • fresh lime juice 1/2 oz
  • dash Angostura bitters
  • dash orange bitters

Directions
Mix all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice, shake well, and strain into a chilled glass.

SIGNATURE MIXES Gin Cocktails.

the White Negroni

JP Fetherston, Southern Efficiency.
Ingredients

  • Green Hat Gin 1 1/2 oz
  • Salers  Gentiane 3/4 oz
  • Orchard Pear Liqueur 1/2 oz

Directions
Combine all ingredients in a shaker with ice. Stir and strain into chilled glass. Garnish with fresh sage leaf.

the Cuore

Kat Hamidi, Etto

Ingredients

  • Green Hat Gin 1 3/4 oz
  • Cynar 1 oz
  • Capitoline White Vermouth 3/4 oz
  • Seville OrangeJuice 1/2 oz

Directions
Combine all ingredients in a shaker. Shake gently and strain over ice. Garnish with a lemon twist.

Blue Bonnet

Joe Croson Red Oak Bistro

Ingredients

  • Green Hat Gin 1.5 oz
  • Agave Necter 1 Tbl
  • Meyer Lemon Juice 1 oz
  • 20 Blueberries
  • 5 small Individual Fennel Fronds

Directions
Shake all the ingredients hard with ice until blueberries are macerated completely and gin turns light purple. Strain through a fine mesh sieve into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with a small fennel frond skewered through a blueberry.

the Fascinator

Erin Lingle,

Ingredients

  • Green Hat Gin 1 1/2 oz
  • Cointreau 1/2 oz
  • Campari 1/4 oz
  • Fresh Lime Juice 3/4 oz

Directions
Combine all ingredients in a shaker with ice. Shake and strain into chilled glass.

FALL SEASONAL Gin Cocktails.

Cyn Cin

Ingredients

  • Green Hat ‘Ginavit’ 1.25 oz
  • Capitoline Rose Vermouth (Sweet Vermouth) 1 oz
  • Cynar 1 oz

Directions
Stir well with ice and serve up on the rocks. Garnish with orange twist.

 Ginavit 75

Ingredients

  • Green Hat ‘Ginavit’ 1.5 oz
  • Lemon juice .5 oz
  • Burnt sugar simple syrup .25 oz
  • Millstone cider

Directions
Combine gin, lemon juice, burnt sugar simple syrup and shake. Pour mixture into ice-filled glass, top this delicious drink off with Millstone cider.

Martinez

Ingredients

  • Green Hat ‘Ginavit’ 2 oz
  • Red Vermouth .75 oz
  • Aromatic bitters

Directions
Stir all ingredients very thoroughly and strain into a chilled cup. Garnish with a strip of orange zest.

 Nordic Lady

Ingredients

  • Green Hat ‘Ginavit’ 2 oz
  • Orange Liqueur .75 oz
  • Lemon Juice .5 oz

Directions
Shake well and strain into cocktail glass. See, not everything needs a lot of preparation!

SPRING & SUMMER SEASONAL Cocktails.

Derby Day 

Ingredients

  • Spring/Summer Gin 2 oz
  • Capitoline White Vermouth .5 oz
  • Capitoline Dry Vermouth .5 oz
  • tonic water

Directions
Stir well with ice and serve up on the rocks, top with tonic water. Garnish with lemon twist.

  Traditional Summer Cup

Ingredients

  • Summer Cup 2 oz
  • Freshly made Lemonade 2 oz
  • mint
  • strawberries
  • cucumber

Directions
Add Summer Cup Cordial, lemonade into shaker with ice. Shake and strain into iced glass. Add cucumber, strawberries and mint. :For added flavor, muddle berries, cucumber and mint before shaking ingredients:

           A Hot Summer’s Night

Ingredients

  • Spring/Summer Gin 1.5 oz
  • Rosemary Honey Simple Syrup .75 oz
  • Meyer Lemon Juice 1 oz

Directions
Add Spring/Summer Gin, Rosemary Honey Simple Syrup and lemon juice in cocktail shaker with ice. Shake well, strain into chilled coupe, garnish with rosemary twig.

            The Sun is Shining

Ingredients

  • Spring/Summer Gin 1 oz
  • Summer Cup 1 oz
  • Meyer Lemon Juice 1/2 oz
  • Fresh Grapefruit Juice 1/2 oz
  • Ginger Beer

Directions
Combine Spring/Summer Gin, Summer Cup Cordial, lemon and grapefruit juice and shake well with ice. Strain into glass over ice, and top with ginger beer. Garnish with grapefruit wedge.

News

To help, at least in a small way, we are donating $1 from every, single cocktail we sell today (8/19) to the Southern Poverty Law Center @splcenter . 
Our cocktail hours are the shortest in Ivy City, as we are only open between 1-4pm, so gather all your friends, tell everyone you know, and come imbibe with us today. The more you drink, the more we can donate! We will also set up a donation jar (separate from our tip jar) for those who may want to throw in some extra. As usual, we will offer free tours and free tastings.
Ivy City cares. We care. #Pleasedrinkresponsibly #drinkingforacause #nohatehere https://www.splcenter.org/

Today is the day we get to introduce you to Old Tom. We are excited to release our brand new gin to the public today. The Old Tom rested for a while in Pedro Ximenez Sherry barrels, but is bottled and ready to be a part of your home bar.

As always, there will be free tours, free tastings and happy hour cocktails during 1-4pm.

Girardot’s Crumbs, LLC will be set up to offer breads and sides to enjoy during (and after) your visit. He will be selling several of his amazing breads, including Portuguese Sweet Bread, Artisan Baguettes,
Jalapeno Cheddar Bread, and Pain de Campagne. See you all at 1pm!

Friday, August 4th: “Art of Engagement” at Touchstone Gallery
A conversation using the universal language of art about today’s important issues and concerns.
Juror: Jack Rasmussen, Director and Curator, American University Museum, Katzen Arts Center.”

On display: August 4 – 24, 2017
Opening Reception: August 4, 6 – 8:30 pm
Free, Open to Public
Cocktails Courtesy of New Columbia Distillers Green Hat Gin
Gourmet Frozen Desserts by Moorenko’s Ice Cream
Classical Violinist: Nakisa Karimian

Touchstone’s August exhibits include both “Art of Engagement” in the main gallery and Touchstone Gallery Member’s small works exhibit in the Annex gallery. At the Opening Reception on August 4, 6 – 8:30 pm, cash prizes will be awarded to three of the artists participating in the national juried show.

We can hardly contain our excitement over our upcoming release of our Old Tom Gin. This is our second brand new gin release this summer, and we are eager to share it with you. The official Old Tom release party is August 5th, 2017 from 1-4pm, so mark your calendars and clear your afternoon for a visit.

Did you not get a chance to try our Aronia Gin we released a few weeks ago? No worries, we still have some left, and will be included in the tasting line-up that day. We will have a record amount of products for our guests to taste on August 5th; Green Hat Year Round, Spring/Summer, Navy Strength, Summer Cup, Aronia Gin, Capitoline Vermouths (Dry, White and Rose) and of course the new Old Tom. Also, check out this Washingtonian write-up of our new releases.

Cheers!

We are keeping the momentum of summer going with another debut; our Old Tom Gin. This is a completely new gin for our distillery, changing up our botanical ratios and adding more citrus.

Old Tom is an almost forgotten style of gin, reaching its peak popularity in England during the 1700’s.  If you are familiar with Old Tom gins, you know they are a bit sweeter than dry gins. We dialed down the sweetness in ours and balanced out the sweet with lemon, oranges and grapefruit. Our desire to elevate this 90.6 proof Old Tom to a new level came to us in the form of a barrel. That’s right! We allowed the Old Tom to rest in Pedro Ximenez dessert sherry casks, giving it complexity, depth, and a lovely, golden hue.
 
There is a history to Old Tom gins. The sweetness is rumored to have been a way to cover cheap botanical flavors (not a problem here).  Sometimes a black cat (“Old Tom”) plaque hung from the outside walls of pubs, with a coin slot near a cat paw faucet. The money dropped into the slot signaled the bartender inside to pour a shot of gin into a tube leading back to the cat paw for the customer. Although this primitive gin vending machine sounds really cool, we can luckily sell our Old Tom without the secrecy thanks to the Repeal of Prohibition in 1933. (Thanks again George Cassiday for helping us out with that one).
Now that you’ve read about our newest gin and had a brief history lesson, we would like to officially invite you all to come taste it and grab a bottle for your home bar. We will be throwing the Old Tom release party on August 5th, from 1-4pm. We will offer free tours, free tastings, and happy hour priced cocktails.
Continuing our dedication to support local, we have invited our fellow Ivy City neighbor and outstanding bread maker, Chris of Giradot’s Crumbs Bakery to set up a table to sell his delicious breads and treats. Giradot’s Crumbs pop-up will be selling perfect portions of his specialty bread with accoutrements to enjoy here, as well as, loaves of bread to take home and enjoy while you sip on your new bottle of NCD’s Old Tom Gin.
As always, please visit our Facebook page or other social media to stay up to date on our Old Tom release event. We look forward to seeing our beloved gin lovers!

Today is the day!!! It is ARONIA day!

Make sure you do not miss the release of our Aronia Gin. This is a first for us and for DC.

Sloe style gins are readily available in England, but not so common here in the U.S. John, one New Columbia Distillers owners, gets to enjoy many sloe gins that are brought back from his wife’s London work travels, and wanted to share his enjoyment of this style with DC. Sloe gins nearly disappeared in the States mid-century, so we thought it was time to bring them back. Michael, John, Travers, and Ian spent quite a long time working on the recipe, sampling a dozen bottles of Sloe gins to find exactly what they were trying to achieve, from what was missing from one bottle, to what flavor characteristics really jumped out to them in others.

The Aronia berries give this fruit- forward gin cordial a vibrant red hue; a nod to the more traditional sloe style color. The mouth-puckering aronia, or chokeberry, is a sour berry that is typically used in wines or jams, but we chose to highlight this fruit’s tart character to balance the slightly sweetened end result. We couldn’t be happier with the finished product, and we are very excited to bring DC it’s first distilled Sloe rendition gin cordial. We love all things local; we shop local, we support local, we are a local business, so naturally we reached out to nearby farms to see what fruit could be used, and the recipe just fell into place once we found our ideal berry.

We are extremely proud of the finished product and are eager to share it with everyone on July 15th. 1-4 pm. 375 ml bottles will be available for purchase at the Distillery beginning that day, until it’s all gone. See you soon!

Also, we have a cite on Wikipedia under sloe related liqueurs…pretty cool!

 

 

We are thrilled to bring a brand new gin to the District. After taking a short break from new gins to focus on our Summer Cup, Rye-Whiskey program and Capitoline Vermouths, we wanted to come back to our gin roots with a whole new twist. Distilled from grain to glass, using local Virginia wheat, we put our spin on a traditional sloe gin by also sourcing locally farmed aronia berries.

The Aronia berries give this fruit- forward gin cordial a vibrant red hue; a nod to the more traditional sloe style color. The mouth-puckering aronia, or chokeberry, is a sour berry that is typically used in wines or jams, but we chose to highlight this fruit’s tart character to balance the slightly sweetened end result. We couldn’t be happier with the finished product, and we are very excited to bring DC it’s first distilled Sloe rendition gin cordial. We love all things local; we shop local, we support local, we are a local business, so naturally we reached out to nearby farms to see what fruit could be used, and the recipe just fell into place once we found our ideal berry.

Sloe style gins are readily available in England, but not so common here in the U.S and nearly disappeared in the States mid-century, so we thought it was time to bring them back. Michael, John, Travers, and Ian spent quite a long time working on the recipe, sampling a dozen bottles of Sloe gins to find exactly what they were trying to achieve, from what was missing from one bottle, to what flavor characteristics really jumped out to them in others.

We are extremely proud of the finished product and are eager to share it with everyone on July 15th. 1-4 pm. 375 ml bottles will be available for purchase at the Distillery beginning that day, until it’s all gone. See you there!

 

Friday is finally here and we can all have a nice weekend to look forward to. We know it’s a holiday weekend, but don’t you worry, we will still be open tomorrow for our normal Saturday hours. Come visit our distillery tomorrow between 1-4pm for Free tours and Free tastings, as well as happy hour priced cocktails, to cool you down. Happy July everyone! See you tomorrow.

It’s finally Saturday, and you know what that means… Free Tours, Free Tastings & Happy Hour Cocktails. How else are you going to cool off today, than with an ice cold Green Hat Cocktail. See you soon. 1-4pm

Hey folks! It’s Thursday, which means 2 things.

1: We will be set up at the Penn Quarter Farmer’s Market from 3-7pm.

2: It’s almost Saturday, which means we will be open from 1-4pm for FREE tours and FREE tastings. Come in and spend your Saturday afternoon with us and enjoy happy hour priced cocktails and good tunes on the speakers.

Contact Us.

New Columbia Distillers LLC
1832 Fenwick St. NE
Washington DC 20002
202-733-1710

Give us the third degree:
cheers@greenhatgin.com

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Free Tastings, Tours and Sales:
Saturday 1-4
No Reservations Required

 

If you are a local business who wants to order our gin, we self-distribute in DC: Send your order requests to:
cheers@greenhatgin.com

 

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