About Rich Grain Distilling
Mississippi was the first state in the country to enact alcohol prohibition in 1917 and the last state in the union to repeal it in 1966. Rich Grain Distilling Co., located in historic Canton, is only the third legal distillery ever in Mississippi’s existence and is the first one specializing in full flavored bourbon whiskies. Before prohibition, there were small distilleries all over the country, and one of which was called Rich Grain Distilling Co. in Kansas City, MO. The original distillery went out of business with the onset of prohibition, but now owner David Rich has resurrected that once proud historic brand. The beautiful original logo was recreated digitally and now adorns the front of the distillery and all of our bottles.
The City of Canton was once the unofficial Mississippi state capital of liquor sales and distribution due to its central location in the state and train stop on the Illinois Central Railroad. Liquor dealers in Canton would buy barreled and aged whiskey from larger distilleries in other states, and then would decant the barrels into ceramic jugs to be sold as their own special brands and blends. These ceramic jugs are prized by antique collectors and several examples survive to this day. It’s said that at one time, there was a different liquor dealer at all four corners of the Canton square. Some of the more well known brands were Trolio, Hossley, Hesdorffer, and Tuteur. Some Leone and Owens brand whiskey jugs can be found as well, but are much more rare.
The new Rich Grain Distilling Co. is located in an 1880’s brick building in downtown Canton that has been meticulously renovated and restored. All aspects of the production process are performed here, by hand, in small batches. Local raw ingredients are received and then milled, mashed, fermented, distilled (in a handmade 300 gallon hybrid pot still made by David), barreled, and bottled. The distillery is ramping up production of bourbon that is patiently aging in the barrelhouse, but until then, unaged corn whiskey, white rum, and spiced rum are for sale. Give the distillery a visit for a tour and tasting!
David Rich, Owner and Head Distiller
I’m a Madison County native and this is my distillery. While I was in college, I discovered bourbon (don’t we all) and became intrigued with all aspects of it. I began researching the history of it, production methods, and began buying and tasting every brand I could. This love affair continued over the next several years, silently, as I worked as a mechanical engineer for a defense contractor in Alabama. While I enjoyed my time there and my former job, I just had a lingering urge to move back home to Mississippi to work for myself, and follow a dream. That dream was realized in March of 2016 when I began full scale production in my very own legal distillery. I’m not a descendant in a long lineage of former distillers, or someone who was a former bootlegger turned legal like you may read about (dubiously) in a biography of other distilleries. Instead, I’m a very technical guy who taught myself, and with the help and knowledge from others before me, how to make really good, quality spirits, from scratch.
Day to day, you can find me grinding grain, making mash, running the still, barreling whiskey, bottling whiskey and rum, and you might see out on the road in a liquor store or bar near you selling my wares. You also might see me here as part of a distillery tour or pouring samples for you in the tasting room. I invite you to come to the distillery for a visit, take a tour, learn about how I make my products, try some samples, and then hopefully go out and buy a bottle for yourself. Cheers!
Delta, Head of Barketing
Tallulah Delta Rich is a 10 year old black lab from Box Kennels in Thaxton, MS. Delta’s primary job at the distillery is laying on the couch, laying on the floor in the sun, and eating corn that falls on the ground. She’s great at her job.
Kitty, Pest Control
Kitty is a 4 month old stray Tabby cat that showed up at the back door of the distillery looking for a job one day. Kitty’s primary job at the distillery is keeping mice out of the grain, climbing on things, and annoying Delta.