Manhattan Moonshine to Launch in New York

manhattan_moonshineWhat’s old is new again. The un-aged white whiskey that established itself as the drink of choice during the roaring twenties has made an epic return in the form of “Manhattan Moonshine.”

An ever-growing fascination with the era of jazz-fueled debauchery and Gatsby-rich style is what led entrepreneurial brothers William and James Kehler to develop a spirit that embodies the essence of the prohibition, the jazz age and Art Deco. Young consumers and baby-boomers alike are increasingly fascinated by the lives lived by the generations before us, as is evident by the flourishing return of the cocktail culture and speakeasy styled bars.

A popular misconception is that all moonshine is cheaply made, harsh tasting, illegal liquor made in the backwoods of the Southern US in bathtubs, radiators or back woods make–shift stills. It is this misconception that gave birth to modern day “moonshines” packaged in mason jars or faux-jug-style bottles. In actuality, the majority of spirits that were produced during Prohibition were produced by sophisticated distilleries that operated in secret, and what they produced flowed into high-class speakeasies across the country. Now that Moonshine is being produced legally, Moonshine has come to refer to any un- aged Whiskey. As for taste and quality, Moonshine, like any other liquor, reflects the quality and craftsmanship that went into it.

In the case of Manhattan Moonshine, the quality of craftsmanship is paramount. Whereas other moonshines are made by following traditional Aged-Whiskey or Bourbon recipes and excluding the final step of barrel aging, the recipe for Manhattan Moonshine was developed from the outset to create an Un-Aged Whiskey. The formula for Manhattan Moonshine was carefully created during a year of experimentation by Ian Smiley, the master distiller and author who literally wrote the book on Moonshine. The team worked with a unique grain bill including oats, rye and spelt as well as a unique yeast, and an innovative distillation process to create a truly great whiskey. Packaged in a sleek art deco styled decanter, Manhattan Moonshine is the first premium, un- aged whiskey that can compete with traditional whiskey offerings based on complexity and quality.

The absence of color and the heavy flavors imparted by the barrel during the traditional ageing process, makes Manhattan Moonshine perfect for mixing cocktails; including many cocktails that traditionally call for Vodka or Gin. The cocktail program developed by James Moreland ranges from the classic but clear “White Manhattan” to the “Duke Negroni” to “Bessie Smash” so named for the late and great Bessie Smith also known as the Empress of the Blues and the most popular female Jazz singer in the 1920’s and 30’s.

To develop the strategy and manage the logistics of the launch, William and James have been working closely with liquor industry expert, Susan Mooney, and her team at the Spirits Consulting Group. “William and James came to us with a truly innovative idea to develop their premium un-aged Whiskey,” said Mooney. “we believe that there is a need in the market for its unique properties, visual appeal and crisp, complex flavor profile.” Manhattan Moonshine will be the perfect spirit choice for non-Whiskey drinkers as well as connoisseurs. SCG worked with the Kehler brothers to find the perfect production partners, develop budgets for their brand launch and to create a winning launch strategy. “We are looking forward to working with the Kehler brothers on the launch of this exciting product”, said Mooney.

Manhattan Moonshine will launch both on and off premise in New York this Fall, in the unmistakable 750 ml art deco decanter, at an ARP of $45. Manhattan- Moonshine will also be available for purchase online at: www.Manhattan-


Manhattan Moonshine Company, LLC was established in 2013 by William and James Kehler to create the greatest un-aged Whiskey ever made and to establish un-aged Whiskey as a legitimate expression of Whiskey that is competitive with aged Whiskey in flavor, quality, and class. Will and James are New York City natives who are both fascinated by the Prohibition era, art deco and jazz. The brothers worked for over a year with whiskey expert, Ian Smiley to create a unique formulation and with SCG spirits industry experts to create the brand and launch the product. Manhattan Moonshine will be introduced to the New York Market in the Fall of 2014.


Spirits Consulting group is a team of industry professionals who specialize in planning, developing and launching innovative wine and spirit brands. Led by CEO Susan Mooney, SCG team has assisted both existing and new brands launch or expand in the U.S. market. Spirits Consulting Group is based in New York.