The Hershey Harrisburg Region has a budding spirits scene featuring two award-winning craft distillers: Midstate Distillery in Harrisburg and Tattered Flag Still Works in Middletown. Our region’s distilleries are handcrafting incredible spirits from locally sourced ingredients and are eager to occupy a spot in your liquor cabinet.
Established in 2016, Midstate Distillery is Harrisburg’s first distillery since Prohibition. Co-owners Dan Healy and Brian Myers are business owners and brothers-in-law who realized that our region needed something a little stronger.
"Our goal is crafting superb, distinct products that reflect our roots and make Pennsylvania proud."
Midstate Distillery proudly uses Pennsylvania grains, water, labor, and bottles in their small-batch spirit production. Most of their spirits are distilled from Non-GMO corn, and their Vodka and Vanilla Vodka is gluten-free.
They also source local ingredients wherever possible. The White Rum is made with locally sourced 100% high-quality baker’s molasses, flavoring the spirit with notes of vanilla and butterscotch. Midstate Distillery infuses their White Rum with beans from Harrisburg’s own Little Amps Coffee Roasters to make their Coffee Liqueur.
Midstate Distilleries aged spirits are their most popular, with an age and proof that varies from batch to batch. Their 4 Grain Bourbon Whiskey is the first aged spirit in Harrisburg and is aged in oak barrels for a smooth finish. Their Rye Whiskey is mashed with corn and barley to even out the spice of rye and aged for optimal sweetness.
Of course you’ll find some moonshine on the list. Midstate Distillery crafts their smooth and strong 140 proof Pennsyltucky with corn, rye, and barley.
Midstate Distillery has several new spirits launching in 2019 and 2020. Look for Barrel-strength whiskeys, apple brandy, spiced rum, and aged rum!
Midstate Distillery Spirit Flights
Oh, these are free. Say what? Midstate Distillery offers free tastings of three spirits.
Sip and sample the spirits then order up a creative craft cocktail! Midstate Distillery has a line of tempting martinis and classic cocktails with a twist like a Maple Manhattan or an Orange Old Fashioned. Ask for their weekly drink special, a creative craft cocktail inspired by holidays or what’s in season. They often feature boozy milkshakes, a strictly adults-only treat!
If you’re in the mood for something truly unique, their infusion series features base spirits with fun, creative ingredients. They’ve begun bottling these Scratch Batch spirits, available for a limited time and varying by flavor. You can also try samples of their fresh fruit/herb spirit infusions, two 1 oz. samples for $6.
Midstate Distillery’s production facility and tasting room in Uptown Harrisburg has a historic air and an industrial-chic vibe. New for 2019, they installed a new patio space with seating for 36, fire pits, and ambient bistro lights. In addition to their spirits, Midstate features regional beer, cider, wine, and snacks to round out their offerings. Pair your drinks with an authentic Mexican dish from Tres Hermanos, offering free delivery to patrons at the tasting room.
Midstate Distillery offers free, 30-minute tours most Saturdays at 4:30 and 6 PM.
Fridays & Saturdays from 5-7 PM, featuring $2 off all cocktails and martinis, $1 off spirit + mixer.
Become a mixologist at their Build a Bloody Mary bar during their Sunday Fundays. They have six vodka infusion options, seasonings, bloody mixes, 22 hot sauce varieties, more than a dozen different pickles and olives, and local vegetables, meats, and cheeses to garnish your masterpiece.
Header photo credit: LLF Photography
Tattered Flag Still Works
Veteran-owned Tattered Flag Brewery & Still Works in Middletown is a must-visit mashup, with a brewhouse, distillery, restaurant, and coffee shop all in one. We’re talking here about their award-winning spirits, but you can read more about their origin and offerings.
"A tattered flag is not just a worn piece of cloth…it has experience and character. Threadbare and frayed, it still represents the ideals and beliefs of those who stand behind it - constantly seeking excellence and the achievement of goals with honor. At Tattered Flag, we live by this."
It might be cliché to say there’s a Tattered Flag spirit for everyone, but with more than 20 unique varieties of vodka, whiskey, rum, gin, tequila, and moonshine, you’re going to find something to cheers with!
Their Master Distiller, Dan Kulick, is one of the most awarded individual craft distillers in Pennsylvania and has helped Tattered Flag Still Works earn a handful of national medals. Their 8-times Distilled Vodka made the list of the 50 Best Domestic Vodkas in 2018 by “The Fifty Best.” Both gin varieties – PA Gin and Susquehanna Citrus Gin – are crafted with hops and earned silver medals in their competitions.
If you’re into south of the border spirits, Tattered Flag is one of the only distillers in PA to make agave (tequila-style) spirits. Their PA Premium Silver Blue Agave won a bronze in the 2018 Great American International Spirits Competition.
Tattered Flag has plans to launch an Irish Whiskey as well as an aged Bourbon. They’ve also got a new location in Hershey, Tattered Flag Distillery Lounge, offering cocktails, to-go spirits, Pennsylvania beer, and a tapas-style food menu.
Tattered Flag Spirit Flights
With 20 options to choose from, a sampling flight is the way to go at Tattered Flag. Get four 1/4 oz. pours for $6 choosing a single spirit (vodka, rum, etc.) or one from each category.
Tattered Flag mixes their spirits into hand-crafted cocktails like a Classic Margarita with their Blue Agave and house-made triple sec or a Moscow Mule topped with their own ginger beer. Another way to sample several spirits at once is their Build-Your-Own Adult Iced Tea. Choose your preferred combination of liquors shaken with organic teas and lemonades. Many of their popular cocktails are available in cans to-go!
Tattered Flag Brewery & Still Works is at home in Middletown in a historic two-story building. Early risers (or extended partiers depending on how you look at it) can enjoy freshly roasted coffee, Irish Coffees, and draft brews beginning at 7 AM Monday through Saturday. In addition to the new Hershey location, they’ve also got a small taproom in Gettysburg.
While you’re noshing on gourmet eggs benedict, breakfast tacos, and french toast, cheers the weekend with Tattered Flag’s Sunday Brunch Day Drinking specials. Try their Bellini of the Week, a Creamsicle Mimosa, or Espresso Martini. Add some kick to your day with a spicy Signature Bloody Mary, topped with pickled shrimp, bacon, and a deviled egg.