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5 New Spirits to Sip on While Watching the Upcoming Solar Eclipse

If you aren’t up to date on celestial news, a total solar eclipse will take place on April 8, during which the moon will completely block out the sun as it passes between the fiery body and Earth. There are all kinds of festivities planned to celebrate and observe the cosmic event, and a few distilleries have gotten onboard and decided to release special spirits to commemorate the occasion. The connection between booze and an eclipse might be a bit nebulous, but that’s what marketing departments are for.

The latest eclipse release announcement comes from Blackland Distillery, which is located in Fort Worth, Texas. Here’s how it is supposed to tie into this celestial event: The grains used in the mashbill are midnight wheat from New Zealand and white corn from Texas, which are supposed to represent the moon blocking out the sun. Sure, why not? The whiskey was bottled at 100 proof, and tasting notes describe a dark-espresso and chocolate character thanks to that midnight wheat, a grain often used to make stout and porter beer. You can try the bourbon for yourself at a Bourbon Dinner Pairing Experience on April 4 at the Hotel Vin, which is in the direct path of the eclipse.

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Casey Jones Distillery’s Total Eclipse Kentucky Straight Bourbon
Casey Jones Distillery’s Total Eclipse Kentucky Straight Bourbon

In Kentucky, Casey Jones Distillery has released its Total Eclipse Kentucky Straight Bourbon, a four-grain bourbon made from a mashbill of 75 percent corn, 10 percent wheat, 10 percent rye, and 5 percent malted barley. It was aged for at least two years and bottled at 100 proof. So how does this whiskey connected to the upcoming cosmic occurance? Well, it has “total eclipse” in the name . . . so there’s that. The distillery is also re-releasing its Total Eclipse Moonshine, an un-aged whiskey that was originally released in 2017 to coincide with the total eclipse that year. (It was named the “Official Spirit of the 2017 Total Solar Eclipse” by Kentucky State Sen. Whitney Westerfield at the time.) Casey Jones will also release its Total Eclipse Cask Strength Single Barrel, which was distilled and barreled around the time of that 2017 eclipse.

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And in New York, Black Button Distilling (the source of the whiskey bottled by Great Jones Distillery in New York City) is releasing a new gin called Dark Sky Gin to celebrate the first time in almost a century that this Rochester distillery has been in the path of an eclipse. It’s a purple gin flavored with botanicals including juniper, angelica root, lemon balm, sunchoke, and butterfly pea flower to give it color. You can try this gin at an eclipse watch party at the distillery on Monday, April 8; NASA-approved glasses are included in the price of entry.

Try sipping one of these spirits while you watch the eclipse if you’re in its path next month, weather permitting, and don’t be surprised if a few more are released in the coming weeks. And remember, please don’t stare directly at the sun like a certain ex-president once did without wearing an approved pair of eclipse glasses, no matter how many cocktails you’ve had.

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