My spirits are always high when I return to my beloved Cape Ann, Massachusetts. They soared when I discovered the Ryan & Wood inc. Distilleries. This hidden gem is easy to find in the Blackburn Industrial Park in Gloucester, Massachusetts. I have known this traditional New England city for many years. It is a joy to see so many new enterprises mix in so well with the places I remember.
Founded in 2006, this unique enterprise has been a labor of love for Bob Ryan, Dave Wood, and their families. My learning experience and tastings at Ryan & Wood were a highlight of my journey to Gloucester.
Bob warmly greeted me when I entered the immaculate distillery. Even though I did not have an appointment or a scheduled tour, he showed me first hand how fine handcrafted spirits are made. I was amazed over the beautiful 600-liter copper pot used to distill the authentic spirits.
Bob and Dave manage the entire distilling process. They select the finest ingredients, and then personally complete every step through the bottling. I love the look of all the bottles…and the names, Beauport Vodka, Knockabout Gin, and Folly Cove Rum. Since rum was one of the first commercially produced spirits in North America, tt is gratifying to witness the return of this unique craft in Gloucester.
I only tasted the vodka, which left a clean and refreshing finish. The Knockabout Gin was made of 10 botanical flavors. I tasted the faint aromas infused in the gin, such as nutmeg, cinnamon, and lemon peel. They simply made me want to knockabout with a good martini.
I am a rum lover, who had visited several distilleries in the Caribbean. Now, Folly Cove Rum became a favorite. Its taste was reminiscent of fine molasses aged in charred American white oak barrels.
That evening, I was scheduled to dine at The Market Restaurant. Folly Cove is on the northeast tip of Gloucester, bordering Rockport, and not far from the restaurant. Hidden Folly Cove has a rich history of smuggling, shipwrecks, diving and lobstering. Remembering all this, I brought a bottle of Folly Cove Rum to share with the restaurant’s staff and guests. Everyone there, including staff and chefs from other cafes, ooh-ed and aah-ed over this delectable amber rum.
Our writing team often includes a recipe in our food and drink columns. This
one, featuring Folly Cove Rum, is posted below in Where and What in the World
under the captions “drinks” and “destinations.” Since my maiden name is Colley, I had fun naming this drink.
1 1/4 oz Folly Cove Rum
1/2 oz pineapple juice
1/2 oz grapefruit juice–I prefer ruby red
Shake all chilled ingredients and pour into a tall glass over ice.
The sweet-tart fruits mix well with the rich rum. I have experimented with other
fruit juices with excellent results. Try ginger, orange, lime, or pomegranate. They
are all delicious with Folly Cove.
For a festive occasion, shake the ingredients over ice and pour into a champagne glass. Top with champagne or sparkling wine. Or top with a few more dashes of rum.
A toast to the true spirits of Cape Ann.
Ryan & Wood, Inc. Distilleries
15 Great Republic Drive
Blackburn Industrial Park
Gloucester, MA 01930