By definition, aged single-malt whisky is a product made with a long-term vision. Nothing about the process is fast. Starting with the season it takes to grow the necessary grain, to the distillation process, to the aging – this is not a short-term investment.
So it makes sense that one of the first artisan distillers in the United States, St. George Spirits, would be asked to create whiskey for The Long Now Foundation, a San Francisco-based group that aims to provide “a counterpoint to today’s accelerating culture and help make long-term thinking more common.”
In addition to elegaic projects such as the 10,000 Year Clock and Revive & Restore, one of the ways Long Now plans on doing promoting the longer view is the establishment of a Salon space to foster discussion and collaboration.
And what does a Salon space require? Books, conversation, a warm space and beverages. Tea and coffee during the day, wines, whiskey and gin at night. All liquids known to foster conversation.
Who will supply the evening spirits? St. George Spirits, based in Alameda, California – just across the Bay from San Francisco. But they won’t be just any beverages.
The Salon will feature Long Now gin or whiskey each created exclusively for it by Lance Winters of St. George Spirits. Stored in the rafters of the Salon, members will have their bottles available to them whenever they visit. There will be the afore-mentioned whiskey, St. George Spirits Bristlecone Gin, and a number of other wines and spirits produced for Long Now.
High-level donors/members will be able to indulge in the 15 Year Founders Whiskey Bottle. Each year for 15 years the private bottle will be filled with the new bottling of the Long Now whiskey as it ages.
For mere mortals such as myself, I would be happy just to wrap my hands around a few sample glasses of St. George Spirits product, which sounds quirky, unique and well-crafted.
There is a beautiful article on St. George Spirits over on Handful of Salt, a publication I am very happy to have discovered during the process of researching this post. The magazine itself is devoted to any craft that takes patience, attentiveness, skill and love of material.
Given what they have to say about the distillery, it sounds like it fulfills all their criteria.
I’d love to hear from anyone who has tried St. George Spirits whiskies.
Until then, I’ll take the long view, and plan on trying some the next time I am Stateside.