Our Process

Our process reflects our mission to create truly excellent Virginia Straight Bourbon and Straight Rye Whiskey without short-cuts and with an eye to responsible land use.

Where It All Began

The legendary Master Distiller and our friend, Dave Pickerell, developed the foundation of our bourbon process – our mash. Every drop of our bourbon comes from our own grain – milled and mashed-in daily – and distilled under the direction Dave bestowed upon us.

Dave Pickerell

We Do Everything Right
and Right Now

We begin by growing 100% of our raw grain on owned or leased land. Our crops have absorbed minerals unique to local soils, which contributes to a taste distinctive to our area. We mill all of our grain fresh every day to create our mash.

From Mash to Spirit

The resulting mash waits in our fermentation tanks for approximately four days as the yeast converts fermentable sugars into alcohol. We then distill the fermented mash in our 500 gallon, custom built still by Vendome Copper and Brass works. Under our watchful eye, this copper pot-column combination still produces a barrel per day. 

Barrels and Bottles

The spirit is aged in new charred American white oak barrels in our Barrel Barn. When our Virginia Straight Bourbon Whiskey has been aged to full maturity, we cut it to bottle proof and bottle it on-site. 

The Result – Superior Taste

Ragged Branch’s mission of creating excellent, independently handcrafted bourbon while adhering to the time honored traditions and distilling processes is reflected in every sip. Grab a bottle and taste for yourself.

Our Cattle…
Our Bourbon Beef

We also offer Ragged Branch Bourbon Beef—prime cuts and hamburger from our cattle, fed with the residual mash from our distillation process. At any one time, we maintain 50-100 head of cattle at Ragged Branch and our nearby leased site at Pounding Branch Farm. Two members of our team, each with an Agricultural Technology degree from Virginia Tech, oversee our cattle process to ensure delivery of only the finest quality beef. We calve many of our cattle on-site. Pick up some Ragged Branch Bourbon Beef at our Tasting Room. A mash-fed steak or hamburger is the perfect complement to our Virginia Straight Bourbon Whiskey.