Archive for October, 2011

Short Mountain Distillery becomes Tennessee’s sixth whiskey maker

October 26th, 2011 No comments

(Woodbury, TN, USA) – Earlier today, Short Mountain Distillery became Tennessee’s newest licensed distillery. The state and federal permits come months after supporters changed Cannon County law by referendum to allow distilleries as well as securing federal permits and completing construction of Still House #1.

Short Mountain Distillery will make a Tennessee sour mash white whiskey (moonshine) from a family recipe handed down for generations in Cannon County. The traditional recipe and process will use locally grown corn that is stone milled on site. Distillery owners, the Kaufman brothers, hope to reconnect visitors with the nation’s agricultural heritage and whiskey making traditions by creating a unique destination.

“Once people experience how our product was made here for generations, they’ll make moonshine America’s drink,” said Billy Kaufman, farmer and Short Mountain Distillery CEO.

Short Mountain Distillery’s traditional process will use local stone milled grain and Tennessee spring water to create a sour mash moonshine, a Bourbon and Tennessee Whiskey. Tourist will be able to follow the spent grain back into the farm process and take the Cave Spring Trail to experience why Tennessee is the perfect location for whiskey making. Visitors will also learn from legendary moonshiners of Short Mountain as they demonstrate processes handed down for generations.

Short Mountain Distillery is owned by the Kaufman brothers: Billy, David and Ben. They are the great grand children of Jesse Shwayder, who 100 years ago founded the iconic American brand Samsonite. Their grandfather, Louis Degen, brought Samsonite to Murfreesboro decades ago bringing steady work to many local families.

Short Mountain Distillery will begin production in January 2012 and open for distillery and farm tours March 23, 2012. The distillery is working to become USDA Certified Organic within a year.

Old moonshiner’s still finds new home on Short Mountain

October 22nd, 2011 No comments

moonshine still

Short Mountain Distillery’s Ricky Estes and John Whittemore set up Ricky’s old moonshine still visitors will see on display at Stillhouse #1. It’s one of very few in Tennessee to survive decades of persistent moonshine busts.

This particular still was built by Emory Bragg and purchased by Mr. Estes back in the 60s or 70s. Some people might know Emory for a bank robbery that sent him to prison back in the day, and still fewer might have known him for his moonshine.

The still has gone through a couple small changes over the years, especially after it blew up and nearly took Ricky with it. For the most part the still made some of the best moonshine to come off Short Mountain. We can’t really say how recent that might have been, but you can rest assured this federally registered still now has a permanent and proud home at Short Mountain Distillery.

Fall workshop: How to grow Shiitake mushrooms

October 17th, 2011 No comments

John Whittemore shares how to grow Shiitake mushrooms on a native white oak log. If done right, these logs will produce mushrooms for several years.

Nothing goes better with good friends and good drinks than good food. Saturday October 29 at 2 p.m. Short Mountain Distillery is offering our first workshop on cultivating your own Shiitake mushroom log. This workshop is in conjunction with Little Short Mountain Farm. Space is very limited and available by reservation and $30 by emailing John Whittemore at or calling 615-216-0830.

John has been growing Shiitake mushrooms for market and personal use for seven years. Guests will use a drill to inoculate their own white oak log with Shiitake mycelium from Summertown, TN and learn how you can keep it producing several pounds of these beneficial mushrooms for years to come.