In direct contrast to Catoctin’s modern setup, the Copper Fox distillery in Sperryville fulfills the wildest romantic ideas of American whiskey-making. The operation is located in an old barn with its tractor-powered barley mill (and sometimes an old yellow dog) sitting out front. But if the Sperryville distillery is more rustic, it is no less refined. CEO and master distiller Rick Wasmund learned his craft in Scotland and brings new-world innovations to the ancient techniques to produce something pretty special: an original North American single malt whisky.
Wasmund malts his barley by hand on a malting floor before smoking the grains with apple and cherry wood. The result is a one-of-a-kind spirit with a complex, earthy flavor. The distillery also makes a fantastic spicy rye whiskey, composed largely of Virginia rye and filled out with Copper Fox’s signature smoked malt.
The distillery store is open from 10 to 6 p.m., and bottles of the single malt and rye are available at the distillery store, as well as unaged versions of the same spirits, which can be used as white whiskies or bought with small aging barrels and oak chips, allowing enthusiasts to experiment with aging the spirits at home.