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Dry Dock Sorghrum

We get lots of request for rum but because we try hard to use local ingredients, and rum is made from sugar cane or molasses, we didn’t think we’d be able to pull it off. Then we had an idea. What about sorghum syrup? We figured that was sugar, so why not?

We found a few places making sorghum syrup but not in the quantities we would need to make enough for a full batch. One a drive back from Des Moines, we stopped at Maasdam Sorghum Mills near Lynnville, IA. They have the most amazing steam-powered sorghum press that processes the sweet sorghum juice and cooks it down to a syrup. We ordered up a 55 gallon drum to try it out and it turned out delicious. The only problem was that sorghum syrup was going to be a very expensive way to make rum. So we decided to order extra sugar when we made coffee liqueur and ferment that along with the sorghum. So this is a hybrid of sorts.

The initial distillate left a wonderfully unique flavor with hints of cinnamon and nutmeg that almost tasted like a lightly spiced rum. We wanted to age it to give it a little color, but were fearful to cover up the flavor of the sorghum. So this spirit aged in a new barrel for only a few months.

As is the case for all of our spirits, we have to get federal formula and label approval for our spirits. So we submitted our paperwork and were denied as a rum. Turns out that in order to call it rum, 100% of the base material has to be cane sugar or cane molasses. So we couldn’t call it rum. So we went round and round trying to figure out what to call it. We came up with the name “Sorghrum” and it just stuck.

See the batch notes

Dry Dock Sorghrum

Our difference is our grain to glass approach

We’re surrounded by some of the finest grain fields in the world. It only makes sense to make the finest spirits from that grain as well. We purchase farm fresh grain, directly from the farmers who grow it. 100% of our grains come from within 25 miles of our distillery. Take our tour and you can see the entire process of spirit making from beginning to end. We’re one of a handful of distillers in the U.S. who take the “grain to glass” small batch distillation approach.

What “grain to glass” means is that we handle every step of the process ourselves, taking our fresh grain and make it into your favorite liquors. We sort and clean the grain and then mill it into a flour-like consistency. We cook the grain to make our mash and then add yeast to let it ferment. We distill the fermented mash and then filter it and blend it to proof. From there, it either goes into a barrel or a bottle. We bottle our spirits by hand. The important thing is that it is all done under our watchful eye, under one roof. We don’t outsource anything. It’s not always efficient but we pride ourselves on inefficiencies that result in a premium product. We know you’ll grow to appreciate our “grain to glass” approach once our spirits go from that glass onto your taste-buds!

Where to buy

Mississippi River Distilling Company

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