This pioneering, family-owned distillery was the first to bring craft distilling back to DC after Prohibition. Fittingly, the founders named their operation after a notorious Capitol Hill bootlegger, George Cassiday, known as "The Man in the Green Hat." Cassiday spent 10 years selling liquor to congressmen and senators, after which he outed his customers by writing about their hypocrisy in The Washington Post. Since 2011, Green Hat has been making several varieties of gin, including the Classic, Navy Strength, and seasonal bottlings.
"It's like asking ‘What’s your favorite band?’ -- there’s so many good, local products. I'm still very partial to Green Hat. They really paved the way for distilling in the District, and their gin is amazing. I love that they're not afraid to experiment. Their Ginavit, which is a mix of gin and aquavit, is the perfect example. It's a great product, and opens the way to add completely new flavors to gin cocktails or something completely original. Also, their Spring/Summer gin is beautiful and includes some unusual botanicals, like cherry blossoms." -- Derek Brown, president of Drink Company (Mockingbird Hill, Eat the Rich, Southern Efficiency, Columbia Room)