Asheville Distilling Co. (Troy & Sons)


The Asheville Distilling Company was founded in 2010 by Troy Ball and her husband Charlie. In 2004, the Balls and their three sons, two of whom suffer from severe allergies and use wheelchairs, moved from Austin, Texas to western North Carolina in search of a better climate. After a few years of sipping on local moonshine, Troy took on the challenge of making her own (legally). Beginning in 2008, she began working with farmer John McEntire whose family has been growing heirloom "Crooked Creek" white corn since the 1850s. With McEntire's white corn and her pressure cooker, Troy and Charlie began to tinker.
Troy Ball. Source: www.ashevilledistilling.com
As Kelly Skinner of Paste Magazine wrote about Troy:


She’s not just a beautiful, self-taught moonshine-making woman. She also possesses a rather unusual juxtaposition of traits that makes her irresistible—she’s jubilant, yet classy; she’s a go-getter with heaps of patience; she can run with the boys but she is not one of them; she has an unbreakable will, yet, she knows how to kick back. Which might be why Appalachia’s mountain men entrusted their moonshine-making secrets to her in the first place. That, and there’s Ball’s inexhaustible persistence. She doesn’t ever give up. 

In addition to Troy's heirloom corn "Platinum" moonshine, she and her team produce Oak Reserve Whiskey and Blonde Whiskey. All of her offerings are 80 proof, and they are intended to be relatively sweet and smooth. 

Asheville Distilling Co. is co-located with the Highland Brewing Company, which is owned by Oscar Wong, one of the coolest dudes in the state of North Carolina.
Oscar Wong. Source: www.highlandbrewing.com
Troy & Sons Platinum

Asheville Distilling Co.
80 proof
$30 at ABC in Salisbury, NC

Color: Clear as water.

Nose: The nose is funky but clean. It is pungent like tequila, and sort of intoxicating like gasoline fumes can be. Not entirely pleasant, but I keep sniffing it again and again.

Tasting Notes: Very earthy and clean. The corn influence is obviously strong but it is rounded out by menthol sweetness. The finish is similar to that of an Altoid mint.

Overall: NR. Troy achieved her goal of creating a high quality, smooth moonshine. I don't particularly enjoy sipping on un-aged corn whiskey, however, so I added most of my bottle to a personal oak barrel I got online. I'll review that when I think it's ready.

Peer reviews:


Troy & Sons Oak Reserve

Asheville Distilling Co.
80 proof
$30 at ABC in Salisbury, NC

Color: Tawny, very light.

Nose: Whoa. So much raw corn. Paint thinner, baseball mitt leather, gasoline/exhaust fumes again. No alcohol influence whatsoever.

Tasting Notes: White doggy, raw corn, faint chocolate syrup. The finish reveals some oak and some vanilla sweetness.

Overall: C. I really don't understand Oak Reserve.

Peer reviews:


Troy & Sons Blonde Whiskey

Asheville Distilling Co.
80 proof
$37 at ABC in Salisbury, NC

Color: Medium amber to crimson.

Nose: Corn cereal. Finally, some brown sugar sweetness. Some leather, some oak. Very gentle and no alcohol influence, which I know is by design.

Tasting Notes: Strong honey. Some nice caramel, vanilla, corn sweetness. Short finish. No burn, no wood, no spice.

Overall: B. By far, the best of the three. The Blonde Whiskey is nothing to write home about, but is a drinkable craft whiskey, well-distilled and created from high quality corn and NC mountain water.

Peer reviews: