The saying goes, “When life gives you lemons, you make lemonade.” For Brooklynite Brad Estabrooke, those lemons came in the form of being laid off from his job, and the lemonade he made is actually gin.
With a little money saved aside, Brad approached his life after a lay-off with guns blazing. He proved wrong the real estate agents, plumbers and everyone else who didn’t take seriously his plan to open an artisan distillery when the first batch of rosemary, ginger, lemon and grapefruit scented gin trickled out of the Breuckelen Distilling Company. Inspired by other independent craftspeople in Brooklyn like the Mast Brothers and Ovenly, Brad had total confidence in what he was creating after reading that this is the easiest time—since prohibition era—to start a distillery, and does everything from preparing the flavorings to dipping the tops of the finished bottles in wax with his own two hands.
While this video is about Brad’s story, it’s easy to get distracted from what he’s saying by the incredible images captured by cinematographer Joshua Kraszewski and the team at Made by Hand, a new video project focussing on “that which is made locally, sustainably, and with a love for craft.” This is the first video in the series, and future episodes include one of writer-cum-knife maker Joel Bukiewicz of Cut Brooklyn.
You can purchase a bottle of Breuckelen gin—and many other hand crafter goodies—in the Made by Hand gift shoppe.