My original intention for this blog post was to share all my favorite things in Cedarburg, a quaint little town just a short drive north of Milwaukee. I had stopped up that way last week after a quick visit with my parents and was ready to list off all my favorite restaurants, coffee shops and things to do. That plan was put on hold however when I stumbled across a little gem I hadn’t seen before….
To my surprise and delight, Cedarburg has really stepped up its game in terms of trendy joints to visit. I absolutely adore this town, but it’s always had more of an old timey, traditional small town vibe. It had been a hot second since I actually spent time in their downtown but I am so glad I took the time to walk around and explore all the new digs, specifically Handen Distillery! Located right on the main drag (aka Washington Ave, where all touristy things take place) this shop is absolutely adorable!
According to their website, “Handen is a word for hands in German and other Northern European languages. It is a nod to the Northern European influence on Wisconsin and more specifically to the Germanic influence on the development of Cedarburg. More importantly it signifies our focus on hand crafting the spirits we provide to you. It serves as a constant reminder that many hands will be responsible for our success and that our ultimate success lies in your hands – the hands of our customer.” I found that so charming and down to earth.
I was greeted by two very sweet girls who gave me the whole run down of the place. The minute the girl told me that it was a woman owned and run distillery, I was sold! #GirlPower It really did blow my mind though. I feel like I always associate things like bourbon and gin with men, so this was kind of cool to me! The space had a beautiful ambiance and very charming, but hip vibe. The liquor shelves right when you walk in are super sleek and I wish I could have gotten a better photo of them.
I could totally tell that a woman had a hand in the distillery process when the employee started explaining the Tank Line Original Gin, and how they had partnered with Rishi Tea to create a more feminine flavored gin. The mixing of juniper, citrus and botanical flavors really was amazing. Naturally I bought a bottle, because all I want in life is a Tom Collins at any given moment. It was totally worth it too - so smooth and not too much pine that you’d normally find in a traditional gin.
Handen Distillery was a pleasant surprise and I highly recommend making a stop up in Cedarburg to check them out. They have a great drink menu, including tasting flights and the staff is ready and willing to give you all the background info you could ever want. I was super impressed with my experience and can’t wait to stop back in.