River Hill Distillery was born in March of 2014 after a months-long and extensive process of securing official licensing to produce whiskey.
Since that time, River Hill Distillery Bourbon and Corn Whiskey has been sold in Virginia ABC stores. By October, 2014, he was now also finally licensed to operate a distillery store on location at his River Hill Farm, about a mile from the town limits of Luray, Va.
Fred and his wife Amy already manage a horse-boarding service there, River Hill Stables, which includes public lodging for overnight guests. They also raise their own beef and sell it direct from the farm.
Page County happens to have a long history of whiskey-making, and Fred notes that, indeed, traditionally much of it has been moonshine. Of course, the River Hill Distillery operation is totally legal and 100 percent family owned and operated.
All the ingredients in the bottled products are either raised right there on the farm, or come from nearby, local sources. “We literally take it from the fields to the bottle,” he says.
Fred Foley acknowledges that his distillery is not a very big operation. But its small size does not appear to bother his outlook for the future. He’s already trying to keep up with demands from local friends and family, even as he had only just started to advertise late in the year of 2014.
And, because of limited quantities available, as well as the personal attention given to producing each bottle of whiskey, River Hill Distillery whiskey products have already started to acquire their own sort of uniqueness.
“When I go out to the ABC stores a lot of times to check on sales, a lot of times I’ll sit there and I’ll sign some bottles for them,” Fred says. “And a lot of people think it’s neat.
“They call it ‘autographed,’ I call it ‘signing the bottles.’ Autographing’s for famous people,” he explains.
He just wants to make good whiskey for folks to enjoy ... from River Hill Distillery.