Just a few miles from my house is the Muddy River Rum Distillery, located in Belmont, North Carolina. As I was perusing my local ABC store one day, I happened to run across their product “Carolina Rum” and got a quick history from the employees. It was enough to convince me to buy a bottle and I’ve kept Muddy River Distillery’s Carolina Rum stocked in my liquor cabinet.
In 2011, after buying 500 square feet of space in an old textile mill they found on Craigslist, Muddy River opened the first rum distillery in North Carolina roughly 50 yards from the “muddy” Catawba River, hence the name. They started producing 35 bottles of rum a day on weekends due to their work schedules, launching their first product in September 2012, seven months after owner Robbie Delaney received all of his licensing from the state, local and federal permits required to distill. By 2013 Muddy River’s proprietors had left their day jobs to work at the distillery full-time. Using house built stills, Liberty and Democracy, Muddy River Distillery pumps a custom mash made of premium South Carolina molasses and sugar, along with a special yeast they’ve selected to give their Carolina Silver Rum it’s unique flavor.
When they were asked how they make rum, the folks at Muddy River Distillery respond with “By staring at a ‘fancy’ water fountain for 12 hours.”
How do I drink my Muddy River Distillery Carolina Rum? There’s a few ways, actually. I like to sip it neat, mix it into a Manhattan, or a Twelve Mile Limit. What is that last one? I’ve shared the recipe below — just take it easy on them.
Looking for Muddy River Distillery Carolina Rum? You can find it in 300 different stores across North Carolina.
Carolina Rum Recipes:
For recipes using their small batch Queen Charlotte’s Reserve (always great for gift giving):
- 1 ounce white rum
- 1/2 ounce rye whiskey
- 1/2 ounce brandy
- 1/2 ounce grenadine
- 1/2 ounce freshly squeezed lemon juice, from 1 lemon
- Garnish: lemon twist
- Add rum, rye, brandy, grenadine, and lemon juice to a cocktail shaker filled with ice.
- Shake until well chilled.
- Strain into a cocktail glass.
- Garnish with a lemon twist and serve.
Looking for more “Handmade in North Carolina?” Head over to Dirt and Noise and see what Ilina is serving up today.