With the liquor laws easing in Pennyslvania, many brewers, distillers, and alcohol aficionados have been looking at getting into the business of helping appease a thirsty population.
In Carnegie, one recent addition to the distilling scene is Quantum Spirits.
While this one is quite young and only has one product available (as of early 2018), their plans are vast and they are on track to do some pretty amazing things in the near future!
First Spirits at Quantum – Rye Vodka and Gin
We'll be the first to admit that when we heard Quantum Spirits was making rye vodka, we had to do a double take.
Normally when you hear rye, your thoughts instantly go to whiskey and you don't even entertain the idea of its use in other spirits. Quantum's vodka includes straight rye as well as rye malt and will give even the most devout whiskey drinkers (like us) reason to pause- is this really going to be vodka?
We can assure you, it is.
When you first sniff the vodka, you get an overwhelming sense of fruitiness- not a pungent alcohol kick like you'd expect from others.
When you taste, the vodka unleashes a flavor that is distinctively rye, but is full of an unusual sweetness to it that the owners like to describe as being reminiscent of creme brulee.
Normally in these circumstances we would smile and nod, as we're not really ones to pick out obscure undertones out of liquors, but that particular tasting note hits it right on the head- so much so that we could be inclined to drink this particular vodka neat.
That is high praise.
So if you lump yourself in the category of non-vodka drinkers because of the spirit having a relatively neutral flavor profile, be sure to give this one a try to have your mind changed completely.
A few months after opening, Quantum Spirits released a gin. This gin was tailored quite a bit to bring out strong flavors of cucumber as well as botanicals.
We thought the rye vodka would be a hard act to follow as it is so, well, different; but the gin lives up to our expectations handily and we plan on having a bottle on our bar as a staple moving forward.
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Go to Quantum for the Cocktails
There is more to Quantum Spirits more than sampling their vodka. The distillery is home to a rather beautiful tasting room that is sleek, simple, and dotted with intergalactic designs, black walls, and team nerd coasters (our personal favorite).
Much like the spirit availability, during our visit to Quantum only four cocktails were available.
We sampled the Schroedinger's Cat (a sparkling spiced cider, vodka, and orange mix) as well as the Galactic Mule (their take on a Moscow Mule with Maine Root Ginger Beer)- both appropriately priced at $7.
The Galactic Mule was about as perfectly balanced of a Moscow Mule as you can get, and the corresponding sweetness of the vodka helped balance out the rather robust flavors of the ginger beer quite nicely.
In normal circumstances this cocktail would've been our winner, but the Schroedinger's Cat took on a life of its own with a beautiful balance between the spiced cider and vodka. The orange slice floating on top also felt fitting for the sci-fi themed spot.
Suffice it to say, whenever they get the Pan-Galactic Gargle Blaster on the menu we'll be the first ones there, along with our favorite towel (of course).
More Spirits Are Coming Soon
We'll be the first to admit that the offering at Quantum Spirits is a little light, for now. But this is to be expected with a brand new distillery that wants to get its product out to the masses.
So while we want you to rush out to this one to enjoy their vodka and gin right this minute (seriously, go now and bring a bottle or two back for us), keep in mind that this distillery's brightest days are still to come.
We look forward to being regulars.
Quantum Spirits is located at 230 E Main Street in Carnegie, PA.
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