View Rates
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
Book Your Stay

Reservation Assistance 1 (202) 628-9100

History Happy Hour: Washington's Whiskey

August 22, 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

George Washington began commercial distilling in 1797 at the urging of his Scottish farm manager, James Anderson, who had experience distilling grain in Scotland and Virginia. He successfully petitioned George Washington that Mount Vernon's crops, combined with the large merchant gristmill and the abundant water supply, would make the distillery a profitable venture.

By 1799, George Washington's distillery produced nearly 11,000 gallons, making it one of the largest whiskey distilleries in America at that time.  Today, George Washington’s Mount Vernon produces limited batches of both aged and unaged whiskey in George Washington’s reconstructed distillery.

This August, join Jim Hewes, veteran bartender at the Willard InterContinental, and Steve Bashore, Director of Historic Trades at George Washington’s Mount Vernon, as they examine George Washington and his entrepreneurial  endeavor to become the largest whiskey distiller in America.

Raise a toast to the first president of the United States of America with a sampling of George Washington’s Straight Rye Whiskey, a limited edition product made using Washington’s original recipe and traditional 18th century methods, all while enjoying a hands-on mixology lesson on the art of crafting Washington-era inspired cocktails.

Admission includes light appetizers and (3) cocktails. 

$54 per adult (21 years +)

About the Speakers

Steve Bashore is the Director of Historic Trades at George Washington's Mount Vernon. In this position he oversees the interpretation, operations and maintenance of Washington's Distillery and Gristmill as well as the Pioneer Farm and Blacksmith Shop. Steve is a traditional miller and distiller by trade and has been operating, interpreting and repairing historic watermills for 26 years. Since 2007, he has been distilling at George Washington's reconstructed distillery producing rye whiskey, bourbon, single malt whisky, rum as well as peach and apple brandy. He has been a spirits judge for the American Craft Spirits Association, and for World of Whiskies. Steve has traveled extensively in the United States, England and Europe researching windmills, watermills, and distilleries and lectures regularly on these subjects.