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Bully Boy

Posted by Josh Childs  July 19, 2012 10:28 PM

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Bully boy bottles.jpgTucked away behind Mass Ave in one of the most industrial parts of town, one would not expect craft distilling.

But thanks to Bully Boy it is.
Founded by brothers Will and Dave Willis in 2010, this family operation epitomizes what our extended bar/cocktail culture should be and strive for. Bully Boy began as a hobby, now aided by racks of oak barrels that once held red wine or Four Roses bourbon, and a state of the art German combination pot/column still, has become much more.

They are completely hands on; when I walked in to the warehouse I met their mom Sally who was in the process of manually affixing neck labels and plastic seals over finished vodka bottles (it was instantly clear to me who kept the operation in line both literally and figuratively). They use certified organic ingredients, make all their spirits in small batches and focus on quality over quantity.

Dave and Will.jpgDave graciously showed me vodka in process, admitting its distillation is “100% science,” where their art is needed more when making rum and whiskey. Wheat based from Aurora Farms in Maine and carbon-filtered, the vodka has a “subtle sweetness and smooth finish.” The white rum is equally as well distilled with a nod to Boston’s past using Blackstrap molasses, but refined using cognac making techniques. The whiskey, clear and un-aged in barrels is clean and boasts a pleasantly bracing mint character.

I looked at the production line in eager anticipation- in the late fall their aged rum and whiskey will be available. In the meantime, think local- not only just great people, Dave and Will have a real handle on their craft. Hoping to do them justice, here’s an aperitif cocktail to enjoy now.

What you.jpg
What you talkin’ ‘bout Willis
1.5 Bully Boy Whiskey
.75 Lillet Blanc
.75 Aperol
Orange peel

Pour ingredients over ice in a cocktail shaker and stir. Strain into a “down” glass and garnish with an orange peel.

This blog is not written or edited by Boston.com or the Boston Globe.
The author is solely responsible for the content.

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