Garrison Brothers Distillery
Garrison Brothers pick up some impressive accolades for the new kid on the block
The modern Texas distilling industry is less than 10 years old, and yet distilled spirits from the Lone Star State are already making waves in national spirits competitions. Tito's Handmade Vodka blazed the trail with wins on the competition circuit, and now other distilleries are following suit. Garrison Brothers Distillery in Hye was permitted in late 2007 and their award-winning Texas Straight Bourbon Whiskey is the only authentic American bourbon whiskey being produced outside of Kentucky and Tennessee.
While Garrison Brothers' output is still very much at the boutique level and its distribution is limited to Austin and a few Hill Country towns, the bourbon is attracting attention. Their initial release sold out so quickly last year that the signed bottles became instant collector's items. This April, Texas Straight was judged Best in Category at the American Distilling Institute's Craft Spirits conference in Portland, Ore. And in March, the same product competed in a blind tasting at the prestigious 11th annual San Francisco World Spirits competition against more than four dozen long-established bourbons. Garrison Brothers came home with a silver medal in the 10-years-or-younger small-batch bourbon category, quite an accomplishment for the new kid on the block.
Bottles of Garrison Brothers bourbon may still be difficult to find on liquor store shelves, but the business owners fought for and won the right to serve samples to guests at the distillery. Bourbon aficionados will want to add a stop at the Garrison Brothers facility near Hye, west of Johnson City on Highway 290, to their next trip out to the Hill Country to enjoy a sample.