Asheville Distilling Company - Troy & Sons Heirloom Moonshine
On a hill nestled beside Asheville’s oldest (legal) brewery, is, fittingly, Asheville’s oldest (legal) distillery. Asheville Distilling Company, makers of Troy & Sons Heirloom Moonshine, is also the first woman-owned distillery in the United States; the owner, Troy Ball, was the first woman to be granted a legal whiskey distilling license in the U.S.
‘Legal whiskey distiller’ was not the future she saw for herself while attending college at Vanderbilt University, or later as a dedicated mother and care-taker of three boys, two of whom have special needs. Ball describes herself as a “48-year-old mother who had been raised in a strict religious household and had consumed maybe 20 glasses of alcohol in her entire life, mostly red wine. I was a Texas girl, born to the ranch. I was also a Vandy girl, the kind who wore pressed jeans and pearl earrings.”
Her recent memoir Pure Heart: a Spirited Tale of Grace, Grit, and Whiskey is a moving tale about family love and an entrepreneurial spirit.
In 2008, after moving to Asheville from Texas to help alleviate some of her son’s health problems, Ball, began to experiment with making moonshine, visiting moonshiners around the region and looking up historical recipes in the NC State archives. With her perfected recipe containing special heirloom ‘Crooked Creek’ corn and only the ‘Pure Heart’ of the whiskey run she developed a business that pulled her family from the depths of the 2008 recession and gave her a new purpose in life.
Today Asheville Distilling Company is going strong, distilling Troy & Sons Oak Reserve, Platinum, and Blonde Whiskey, along with two flavored whiskeys: Nectarine and Honey, and Cinnamon and Honey. Asheville Distilling Company also distills for other companies such as Tim Smith’s Climax Moonshine.
Free tours are offered on Fridays and Saturdays at 5 & 6 pm, followed by a tasting of all the products.You can also buy bottles, Ball’s memoir, and her son Marshall Stewart Ball’s bestselling book, Kiss of God. Her story is inspiring and the distillery is worth a visit.