In 1927, before establishing Virginia’s oldest distillery, A. Smith Bowman purchased the 7,200-acre Sunset Hills farm in Fairfax County with one objective—to open up a dairy and granary. Shortly after bringing the idea to life, his fields became so abundant that he needed a use for the excess grain. This one defining moment changed the entire course of the A. Smith Bowman legacy and ultimately led to the best whiskey in the world.
In 1934, A. Smith Bowman built a groundbreaking distillery on the farm land and turned it into a family-owned business. With the help of his two sons, he produced the first ever batch of Virginia Gentleman. Up until the 1950s, A. Smith Bowman Distillery was the sole producer of legal whiskey in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Since then, the focus has shifted from our classic spirit to producing premium handcrafted small batches and experimental editions that embody innovation at its core.
Today, our historic family-owned distillery has relocated to Fredericksburg, yet still continues to balance our long-lived traditions, honoring one of Virginia’s great pioneers. Most recently in 2016 and 2017, A. Smith Bowman Distillery won the “World’s Best Bourbon” at the World Whiskies Awards — solidifying us as Virginia’s Most Award-Winning Distillery.