Firefly Distillery

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Firefly Distillery is a company located on Wadmalaw Island, thirty miles south of Charleston, South Carolina, that produces a line of alcoholic beverages and licenses its brand name to The Sazerac Company for Firefly branded products produced elsewhere. Firefly branded products sold outside of South Carolina are actually produced in Kentucky by the Sazerac Company rather than being produced by Firefly itself.[1][2]

Products[edit]

Firefly Muscadine Vodka

Firefly Distillery's first product was Firefly Muscadine Vodka. The vodka was introduced in April 2006, after an impromptu early March debut at Charleston International Antiques Show emceed by Martha Stewart gave the company unexpected attention.[3]

The flavored vodka was inspired by the distillery's location on a vineyard. Muscadine grapes are native to the southeast region, and muscadine wine is traditionally a very sweet wine. This product was originally produced in Florida due to South Carolina's distillery licensing fees issues.[3]

Firefly earned 89 out of 100 points from the Beverage Testing Institute in Chicago, outscoring such industry standards as Absolut and Ketel One.[3]

Firefly Sweet Tea Vodka

In April 2008 Firefly Sweet Tea Vodka was added to the product line. The product is a twist on the southern staple, sweet tea. The vodka is distilled on Wadmalaw Island and the tea is from Charleston Tea Plantation. Additional flavors include: Firefly Mint Tea Vodka, Firefly Raspberry Tea Vodka, Firefly Lemon Tea Vodka, and Firefly Peach Tea Vodka.[4]

Firefly Handcrafted Vodka

Firefly Handcrafted Vodka, a straight vodka product, was introduced to the market January 2009. This vodka is distilled slowly in batches six times. Currently this product is only distributed to South Carolina, but plans are to expand distribution. The 2009 San Francisco World Spirits Competition awarded Firefly Handcrafted Vodka a Bronze Medal.[5]

Firefly Lemon Tea Vodka, Mint Tea Vodka, Raspberry Tea Vodka, Peach Tea Vodka

Firefly Distillery expanded their product portfolio March 2009 with flavored tea vodkas. The 2009 San Francisco World Spirits Competition awarded a Double Gold Medal to Firefly Mint Tea Flavored Vodka, a Silver Medal for Firefly's Peach Tea, and a Bronze Medal to Firefly Lemon Tea Vodka.[5]

Firefly Sweet Tea Whiskey

Firefly Sweet Tea Whiskey is made with tea grown locally near the distillery.[6]

Firefly Bourbon Ball Whiskey

Firefly Bourbon Ball Whiskey is a chocolate and pecan flavored whiskey.[6]

Firefly Southern Lemonade

Firefly Southern Lemonade was released in April 2010 and is a part of Firefly's ready to drink collection. Firefly Southern Lemonade blends Firefly straight vodka with fresh squeezed lemonade.[7]

Firefly Sweet Tea Lemonade

The Sweet Tea Lemonade is a blend of Firefly Sweet Tea Vodka and fresh squeezed lemonade.[7]

Production by the Sazerac Company[edit]

In October 2008, Firefly Distillery and the Sazerac Company formed a joint venture to produce Firefly Sweet Tea Vodka at Sazerac's Buffalo Trace Distillery in Kentucky and distribute the product through Sazerac's distribution channels.[8][9] Through this joint venture Firefly Sweet Tea Vodka was able to be distributed to all states by March 2009.

As of April 2016, the company's web site says that "Firefly products that are sold outside of South Carolina are made at our sister distilleries in Kentucky",[1] and the Sazerac Company web site lists Firefly brand products in its brand portfolio.[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b About Firefly Spirits, Firefly Distillery official web site. Accessed 2016-04-14.
  2. ^ a b Sazerac Brand Portfolio, The Sazerac Company official web site.
  3. ^ a b c Hartvigsen, Kristine (Feb 1, 2007). "Kindred Spirits: Firefly Vodka". South Carolina Business: Centerfold. Retrieved March 18, 2009. [dead link]
  4. ^ Brown, Robbie (February 10, 2009). "A Southern Twist: Tea-Infused Vodka". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2009-03-18. 
  5. ^ a b "Firefly Flavored Tea". The Sazerac Company official web site. Retrieved 29 May 2015. 
  6. ^ a b Firefly Distillery website
  7. ^ a b Barna, Stephanie (May 10, 2010). "Firefly Bottles Up a New Cocktail". Charles City Paper. The Charleston City Paper. Retrieved 2010-09-10. 
  8. ^ Bird, Allyson (October 15, 2008). "Firefly to buzz nation". The Post and Courier. Archived from the original on October 19, 2008. 
  9. ^ Sexton, Megan (Jan 8, 2009). "S.C.-born Firefly Sweet Tea Flavored Vodka quenching a thirsty nation". The State. Archived from the original on March 6, 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-18.