Moonshine tasting at Palmetto Moonshine

Apple Pie and Blackberry moonshine

White Lightning, Peach, Blackberry, and Apple Pie moonshine

Unleash your inner-outlaw – but keep it legal – by sampling moonshine at Palmetto Moonshine in Myrtle Beach.  Palmetto Moonshine offers South Carolina’s first legal moonshine, made from local ingredients and distilled in Anderson, SC.

Kelly and I visited Palmetto Moonshine at their Myrtle Beach location at 4801 S. Kings Hwy and were greeted by a friendly staff who willingly gave us a short history of the company: the company started in 2011 when the Boggs brothers were issued a permit by the state of South Carolina to make moonshine (you see it’s legal in some states as long as the government gets their share of the profits).

Another employee gave us a quick tutorial on making moonshine: moonshine is made from sugar, corn, water, and yeast and is distilled through a still with three copper drums – they use copper because it heats evenly.  All the ingredients are mixed in the first drum (they have an actual working still on display, however they have turned it into a water-fountain); the vapors from the first drum travel through pipes to the “thunder drum” (illegal stills tend not to have this drum because it makes so much noise and they don’t want their location to be announced – or they put some kind of muffler on it to silence it) and then goes into the “worm box,” a drum where the vapors travel through a spiral coil that is surrounded by cold water which turns the vapor into liquid.  This liquid then pours out of a spout and you have moonshine! The first liquid out of the spout is called “the head” and is literally gasoline – our tour guide said that they have given it to area farmers to run their tractors on. The next is “the heart” which is 150 proof (which they dilute down to 105 proof), and then “the foot” is the stuff at the end that they sometimes add to the mash that they feed local (and happy) pigs (an early marination, our tour guide teased).

A moonshine still

A moonshine still

Kelly and I moved into their tasting room where we stood at a bar and were given tiny sampling cups – smaller than the average individual Communion cups you might get at church.  The barista (no coffee here though) offered us their original flavor: white ligtning, and explained it would burn going down but was very smooth. This was 105 proof.  The other three offerings were 45 proof: peach, blackberry, and apple pie.  My favorite was the apple pie – the mason jar comes with a cinnamon stick in it! Kelly said it tasted like Thanksgiving. The staff was quick to give us recipe ideas for mixed drinks and meat marinades. We also tasted their margarita mix which was delicious.

Palmetto Moonshine offers many gifts ideas: shirts, hats, mason jars, koozies, golf towels, grits, soaps, lip balm, barbecue sauce, jams, steak rubs, etc. and of course moonshine!  They also showcase jewelry made by a mother-daughter duo from Anderson, SC.

Sample their four flavors for free, offered daily (bring your I.D. – they check before you can sample the moonshine)