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Montanya Distillers' new rum is an ode to female distillers

The rum, Valentia was created, distilled and bottled by an all female crew


Montanya Distillers' co-founder and CEO Karen Hoskin bottles Valentia with an all-female crew. Photo by Melinda Hulm.

The result of a four year journey of grit and determination, Montanya Distillers, a craft rum distillery in Crested Butte, recently released its newest rum, Valentia. The limited release rum was created to celebrate the progress women have made in becoming a vital part of craft distilling. 

“I wanted this rum to celebrate the progress women have made in becoming legitimate participants in the craft distilling industry. When I started more than a decade ago, there were hardly any female-owned distilleries, lead female distillers or women in leadership roles,” says Karen Hoskin, CEO and co-founder of Montanya Disillers. “Although the numbers are still small, they are growing and it's exciting to see. This is my ode to the women I get to work with at Montanya Distillers and throughout the distilling business.”

Every aspect of Valentia was female inspired and created. Montanya distiller Renee Newton started distilling the rum four years ago, including a finish in a second rye barrel from Catoctin Creek Distillery, distilled by Becky Harris, Catoctin’s founder, owner and head distiller. According to Hoskin, this is the longest aged of any of Montanya’s rum and the first to use a Rye barrel to finish. A female crew bottled the first Valentia batch in November 2019 and the next release will be bottled in February.

Montanya describes Valentia as an aromatic rum with a natural sweetness, hints of vanilla, cardamom, ginger and peppery notes from the rye barrel.

Photo by Melinda Hulm.

According to Hoskin, all of Montanya’s rums are named in Spanish, “because I first discovered the mountain tradition of rum distilling and the rum flavor profiles I love most in Spanish-speaking countries in Central and South America.” Valentia means courage, bravery and grit. “Valentia was the perfect name to represent this rum and the contributions of women in distilling, which required some courage to overcome the barriers.”

Montanya Distillers, which means mountain in Spanish, is a certified B Corporation and was named a Best for the World Company in 2019, which means it operates in the top 10% of certified B Corps on all measures. 

As part of its mission as a B Corp, Valentia is the first Montanya rum to use a Cradle to Cradle glass bottle. “Glass is one of the major consumable items we use, and if we're going to truly be sustainable, our glass supply needs to be as well,” Hoskin says. “For this reason, we source our glass from a company that is equally committed to minimizing its environmental impact while producing glass.”

Cradle to Cradle is a certification for manufacturers, given when the bottles meet certain standards for environmental and social performance regarding material health and reuse, renewable energy, carbon management, water stewardship and social fairness. 

To learn more about Montanya Distillers and its journey as a B Corp, click here

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Ali Longwell

Ali Longwell is the digital editor at ColoradoBiz. She has also written for SDxCentral, a B2B online technology publication, as well as Denver-area lifestyle magazines 5280, Denver Life Magazine, Avid Lifestyle and more. She can be reached at alongwell@cobizmag.com

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