Local Distillery Releases First Whiskey

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GENEVA, Ohio — Gene Sigel had no expectations for the release of his locally made bourbon and rye whiskey, but judging by sales, it seems he may be on to something.

“I’ve been tasting it all along for the last year but this was the first time we had outside confirmation that we’re doing something special here in Ohio,” he said.

Red Eagle Distillery sold out of much of what was bottled last week, some 300 bottles, when it launched its product Saturday.

Sigel, the owner and distiller, says it is the first bourbon and rye whiskey legally made in Ashtabula County since prohibition.

“Flavor is fruity, slightly sweet from the oak barrels, caramel and a little bit of toasted oak,” Sigel explained.

Red Eagle is located in an old barn on a working grape farm on South River Road in Geneva.

Sigel had been making wine in the area for twenty years and decided it was a good place to start a new venture.

Both locals and people traveling through gave the whiskey good reviews Saturday, Sigel said.

Red Eagle is open Saturdays from 1-9 p.m. and Sundays from 1-6 p.m.