In honor of Inauguration Day, we are celebrating an American distillery with ties to presidents like Abraham Lincoln and George Washington. It’s not just any distillery, it’s the oldest family distillery in the nation… they’ve gotta be doing something right to be around for that long.
Laird & Company in Scobeyville, New Jersey was founded in 1780 and is the 14th oldest family business in the United States. It’s currently being run by Lisa Laird, part of the family’s 9th generation of owners. Lisa’s fourth great grandfather was a revolutionary war soldier under General George Washington who also served Washington Laird’s Applejack in his home. Back when Abraham Lincoln was a tavern owner in Springfield, Illinois, he served Laird’s Apple Brandy. Also, when Lyndon B. Johnson met with Soviet Premier Alexei Kozygin in 1967, he presented the leader with a case of Laird’s Applejack.
The only time the company had to stop producing was at the beginning of prohibition, but about four years before the end of it, they opened the plant again to produce fresh cider. Two years later, the federal government gave them a license to distill, mainly for the military (we’re sensing some special treatment.) This gave them a leg up because by the time prohibition ended, they had inventory all ready to be sold.
Many apples are sacrificed to keep Laird’s running smoothly.
• One barrel of apple brandy needs 7,000 pounds of apples.
• A 750ML bottle of Laird’s Applejack needs 6lbs of apples
• A 750ML bottle of Lairds’ 7 1/2 year old Apple Brandy needs 16lbs of apples
• A 750ML bottle of Laird’s Apple Bond needs 20lbs of apples
• A 750ML bottle of Laird’s 12 year old Apple Brandy needs 30lbs of apples
Laird’s, we think you deserve to be in the history books. Cheers.