When was the last time you snuck into a speakeasy and had yourself a glass of locally-made spirits? Never?
Then you should head straight to the Speakeasy Lab at Deacon Giles Distillery in Salem. If you can find it, that is.
The story of Deacon Giles dates back to Old Salem circa 1835. According to the distillery website:
"Amos Giles was an impious man, distilling rum on the Sabbath, paying his employees with liquor and selling bibles from his counting room. After his employees finally walked out in anger, he unknowingly hired a gang of demons to operate his distillery. The demons decided to play a trick on Old Deacon Giles, secretly branding his barrels with messages of damnation that glowed with an unholy light when tapped..."
This story inspired the owners to revive the art of distilling in Salem.
A sip of liquor at Deacon Giles Distillery will whisk you back to the days of Prohibition. This old-fashioned distillery is home to the Speakeasy Lab, a tasting room and bar serving original cocktails made from their own distilled-on-site spirits.
The Deacon Giles Distillery produces their own gin, vodka, rum, spiced rum, and amber rum. The staff are very knowledgeable, and happy to answer questions about how each one is made.
Tours and tastings are offered on Saturdays and Sundays at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.
The entrance to the distillery can be a little tough to locate, just like a true speakeasy should be. But once you track it down, you’ll find a drinks menu packed with creative and locally-inspired options.
Try the Back Bar, made with rum, lime, cranberry simple, and rosemary-clove meringue; or the Hot and Dirty, a spicy mix of vodka, Sriracha pickle brine, and hot sauce.
The speakeasy is dog friendly, so bring your furry partner in crime. Kids and teens are also welcome, though the lab is 21+ only after 7 p.m.
Slip into this speakeasy for a trip through time and a taste of the Bay State’s more illicit past.
The Speakeasy Lab at Deacon Giles Distillery is located at 75 Canal St., Salem. The entrance is on Gardner Street. Click here to visit their website for more information