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Belly Up: Applejack

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Belly Up: Applejack
By Lia Grabowski | Photos By Sarah Jane Sanders

American as Apple Pie

Proof on Main's bartenders recommend Copper & Kings' unaged apple brandy, a small-batch product distilled in Louisville.

Apple cider and spirits are rooted in American history, dating back to the 1600s. There are two distinct versions of apple spirits—apple brandy and applejack—and although both originate from cider, they differ widely in their creation process and alcohol content. While apple brandy is traditionally distilled, applejack goes through a lengthier process known as “jacking.” During colonial times, cider was left in barrels outdoors during the winter, exposing it to freezing temperatures. Since water freezes faster than alcohol, the hard stuff could be separated, concentrating the flavor and alcohol of the remaining liquid and resulting in a potent spirit now known as applejack. Here’s how the bar team at Louisville’s Proof on Main makes the most of these apple spirits.

Carolina Rose

Double Down