What do you get when you combine Oprah’s Favorite Things List, the International Wine and Spirits Five Best Whiskies in the World title and one of the most compelling stories we’ve ever seen? Uncle Nearest Whiskey, a brand that honors the world’s first known black master distiller and an easy choice for one of our top 10 Craft Distillery of the Year Award finalists. Nearest Green was an enslaved Black man who distilled whiskey as early as the 1850s, and who is credited for teaching a young Jack Daniel the craft of distillation and eventually becoming a mentor to him. Behind this great brand is CEO Fawn Weaver and her all-female leadership team working to ensure the spirit is consistently living up to Nearest Green’s legacy.
Since its release, Uncle Nearest has become the fastest-growing American whiskey brand in U.S. history. Uncle Nearest Premium Whiskey debuted in July 2017, and in less than two years the company expanded into all 50 states and 12 countries. The brand is also racking up awards left and right including Wine Enthusiast’s 2020 Spirit Brand of the Year, the International Wines & Spirits Competition Best Bourbon and landing on Oprah’s Favorite Things list. Not bad, eh? If you want to see Uncle Nearest crowned as RackHouse Whiskey Club’s Craft Distillery of the Year, vote now! To learn more about this incredible history and the impact Uncle Nearest is making on its community, click here.
Our first step to determine the Craft Distillery of the Year Award winner was to open up the competition to the public to nominate your favorite craft distillery. From there, an expert panel of judges narrowed the list down to 10 finalists based on these four categories: compelling story, impact on community, marketing presence and branding and packaging. Now we’re turning the competition over to you to determine the distillery you believe deserves to be named the 2021 RackHouse Whiskey Club Craft Distillery of the Year. Get your votes in now, voting closes on Nov. 30! VOTE NOW!