Formally opened in 2014 by longtime friends Tom Yozzo and Chris Moyer, Hudson Valley Distillers in Clermont joins a growing number of farm distilleries across the region that are revitalizing the local economy with boosted agritourism and reliance on local fruits and grains.
“The concentration of farms here is great,” Yozzo notes. “Distilling has resurged so much lately, so we’re able to bring back demand for certain grains that were once unprofitable for farmers to grow.”
As the three-year-old distillery continues to develop, a partnership with the local Rhinebeck Bank has enabled the distillers to purchase more supplies and equipment including a larger still and new mashing system to keep up with demand and develop new products.
“The bank has stepped up pretty hard and has been a great partner in our growth,” Yozzo says. “Our first backyard still was only 26 gallons but now we’re up to 300. It had a lot to do with Rhinebeck Bank.”
Currently offering three applejacks, two gins, several whiskies, brandies and a vodka, Hudson Valley Distillers produces 10,000 cases per year on average. “We’re in liquor stores from Manhattan all the way up to Albany,” Yozzo says.
With a recent addition to the farm distillery’s historic barn on site earlier this year, the company has become a destination for out-of-towners and locals alike. On any given weekend, the barn, home to the Cocktail Grove, and the courtyard outside are packed with visitors sampling spirits and locally-sourced tapas. Additionally, a market on the property offers a stock of local wine, beer and spirits for customers to browse and purchase.
“Between Red Hook and Hudson, it used to be like a desert with not much to do,” Yozzo recalls. “Now, we’re in a prime spot for people to visit and make a day out of it. Rhinebeck Bank saw the value to help a small business grow in their community, and they helped us move to where we are today.”
For more information about Rhinebeck Bank’s financial services, visit rhinebeckbank.com.