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10th Mountain Whiskey & Spirit Company salutes America's elite winter warriors

On Dec. 7, 1941 the United States entered World War II. On Dec. 8, 1942, the US Army activated its first mountain unit — the 10th Mountain Division. They were an elite force of winter warriors who went on to successfully fight Nazi German soldiers in mountainous Italy.

“In this country, there are two million equipped, intelligent and able skiers. I contend that it is more reasonable to make soldiers out of skiers than skiers out of soldiers,” National Ski Patrol founder Minnie Dole said as he convinced the War Department to form the division.

In 2014, the 10th Mountain Whiskey & Spirit Company launched turning Rocky Mountain snowmelt into bourbon and rye to honor the soldiers’ valor and the mountain lifestyle they represented. 

Based in the heart of the Rockies in Gypsum, Colorado, and with a tasting room in Vail, 10th Mountain Whiskey & Spirit Company is Colorado’s premier distillery, crafting spirits from locally sourced ingredients. The distillery’s aim is to represent the best of the mountains and to bring people together. Not only are their products a tribute to the soldiers of the 10th Mountain Division, it’s also a salute to those that share a passion for the mountain lifestyle.

The history of Vail begins with the 10th Mountain Division. Not only did the skiers-turned-soldiers train a few miles south of what is now the world-renowned ski resort, when they returned from the war many of them became entrepreneurs creating ski resorts around the country (including Vail) and in turn encouraged others to pursue their own passion for the mountain lifestyle. It is thought close to 2,000 of the division's troops were involved in skiing-related professions after the war and at least 60 ski resorts were created by men of the division.

As far as the distillery’s products, they’re equally acclaimed. 10th Mountain Bourbon earned a 92 rating from Jim Murray’s Whiskey Bible while its 10th Mountain Rye received an astonishing score of 94 from the same publication.  

“If you don’t like it, send it back to us and we’ll drink it for you,” distillery co-founder Ryan Thompson joked with us. 

Both are being featured in our next RackHouse Whiskey Club box


What’s in the box

10th Mountain Bourbon

Mash bill with 75% corn.

Appearance: warm amber / brown

Nose: medium sweetness with hints of vanilla and oak, hint of honey

Palate: smooth, medium bodied, toasted nuts

Finish: sweet, medium-long, vanilla

Aged: new charred oak barrel

Awards

Global Spirits Competition: Gold

North American Whiskey and Bourbon Competition: Gold

Denver International Spirits Festival: Gold

Jim Murray's 2018 Whiskey Bible ratings: 92 points


10th Mountain Bourbon Rye


Mash bill: high rye with barley.

Appearance: golden amber

Nose: aromas of oak, dark fruit and light caramel with a hint of cinnamon

Palate: spicy, full bodied, touch of toffee

Finish: dry finish with lingering spice and oak notes

Aged: charred oak barrel

Awards

Global Spirits Competition: Double Gold

North American Whiskey and Bourbon Competition: Gold

Denver International Spirits Festival: Silver

Jim Murray's 2018 Whiskey Bible rating: 94 points


Sign up to RackHouse Whiskey Club by Feb. 10, 2020 to try some 10th Mountain and get into the mountaineering spirit.

2 comments

  • What states do you distribute your whiskey to

    Jeff Rosson
  • What states do you distribute your whiskey to

    Jeff Rosson

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