Buck O’Hairen Rides Again

Screen Shot 2013-10-15 at 12.54.15 AMSeveral months back I wrote about the 19th century Appalachian moonshiner Buck O’Hairen, whose bio surfaced after a one-of-a-kind firsthand journal was discovered and put online. I decided to write about him not only because I had never heard of the dude in all my years of talking ‘shine, but because he just seemed like one odd character. O’Hairen was a renowned distiller as well as a musician, poet, entrepreneur, and even owned a pet raccoon named Trigger. Turns out I’m not the only one who was intrigued by old Buck.

A company called Sunshine Beverages, LLC out of Winston-Salem, North Carolina recently launched a beverage called Buck O’Hairen’s Legendary Sunshine. Their drink is “inspired” by the 1875 recipe O’Hairen concocted…a drink called Sunshine, which was a non-alcoholic mash of fruit, vegetable and root juices that he sold from a roadside wagon.

While the modern-day version of Buck O’Hairen’s Sunshine seems to be more of a contemporary pick-me-up refreshment than a simple “mash” from yesteryear, reality is it probably tastes a helluva lot better.  It rocks some natural ginger, blackberry, stevia and artwork on the packaging that a man of Buck’s culture would have appreciated. Most of the reviews I’ve been reading have been positive. I may just have to try a case for myself. The holidays are coming around, and who knows when I’ll need something to clear the clouds.


A Maltier Kind of Moonshine

Celest-Jewel-Ale_Beer_DogfishHead_634x685Technically, it’s a beer. But since real moon dust is one of the ingredients, I’d like to think of it as a really bizarre take on moonshine.

Delaware-based brewery Dogfish Head developed the brew, appropriately named “Celest-jewel-ale,” to celebrate the autumnal equinox last month. The brewery said that the moon dust is made up mainly of minerals and salt, which help along the fermentation process and give it a unique, earthy complexity.

Cheers to Dogfish Head on making beer with the moon.