"There's been a lot of enthusiasm around the product," Peter says, and review after review after review after review agrees with him. Something about his new spirit has struck a chord with gin drinkers. There are a couple reasons for that, in Peter's view.
In only its second run, 100 Mill Street is both limited (it's distilled from Wisconsin maple sap, meaning its yield is dictated by the season, resulting in just 3,000 distilled bottles per batch) and somewhat unorthodox: spirits reviewer t8ke pointed out that "no grain is involved in production, which is something I find unique. This is certainly a first for me."
Unique, but not esoteric. Peter says even he was caught off-guard by just how broad the appeal of his new spirit was.
"I've been surprised by how, for so many people, it becomes a near everyday gin," he said. "I always thought of it more as a gin for connoisseurs. It's been great to see how diverse that group is – how broad a palate it appeals to."
Its citrusy nose, sweet and savory tasting notes, and clean, spicy finish, all critically lauded, probably have something to do with it, but its scarcity might also be an ironic factor in its popularity. Peter says that since launching at Haskell's, 100 Mill Street outsells competitors handily – and his latest batch has nearly sold out ahead of bottling.
The Haskell's Connection
"My relationship with Haskell's goes back a long time," Peter says. That relationship gave him the confidence to bring the concept of 100 Mill Street Gin to Haskell's.
"Ted was instrumental in the notion of 100 Mill Street Gin," Peter says. "They're constantly being pitched all kinds of spirits. I asked him what kind of [gins] were being made and what he wanted to see in a gin. Some of that led to us using maple sap as a base."
With the expertise and advice secured, Haskell's became one of 100 Mill Street's first distributors – a key player in bringing the new spirit to a nation of thirsty aficionados. "One of the great things Haskell's has is a really solid online presence," Peter says. "I have friends from all over the country and gin enthusiasts who can buy 100 Mill Street Gin at Haskell's. Most family-owned liquor stores don't have that ability."
Keeping the "Integrity" of 100 Mill Street Gin
Peter approaches 100 Mill Street Gin as something of a living product, seeking feedback and notes wherever it's being tasted. "Bartenders are very in touch with what they're pouring," he says, "so it's been inspiring to talk to them about how they use 100 Mill Street."
His number-one most-asked question: 'When is more coming?'
"I often get asked if we can produce more at a time," Peter said. "'Is there a way to scale this up?' I have to respectfully say, 'There's not.'" (It takes 30,000 gallons of maple sap, naturally harvested from 3,000 trees, to make 3,000 bottles of 100 Mill Street. Peter has said the resulting product is flavored by the season, duration, and even the angle of the sun as it coaxes the sap from the living trees.)
"We want to maintain the integrity of the gin and the recipe. It would be a huge challenge to scale it up," he says, even if he wanted to. In the meantime, Peter doesn't seem to mind that 100 Mill Street is defined by its rarity.
Try This Gin Cocktail with 100 Mill Street Gin
"Quarantine has been a great time to get into the cocktail world," Peter says. Neat and dry martini are a few go-to ways to try 100 Mill Street, and Peter recommends Ted Farrell's "The Alaska" if you're feeling creative.
- 2 oz 100 Mill Street Gin
- 1 oz Chartreaux Yellow
- Dash of orange bitters
- Shaker filled with ice
- Lemon rind (to garnish)
- Pour gin, chartreaux, and bitters into an ice-filled shaker. Shake vigorously.
- Strain into glass.
- Garnish with lemon rind.
- Enjoy on a warm summer evening (or anytime).
Find 100 Mill Street Gin at Haskell's and at our online store – while it lasts!