History of Distilling in

Lake County

The history of crafting ‘spirits’ in Lake County started immediately with the arrival of the first settlers.  Painesville had a distillery by 1819 with Madison having distilleries by 1830.  Kirkland followed suite with a distillery in 1850 with sole purpose of turning corn into whiskey to use as money since hard currency was scarce.  This industry boomed until Prohibition went into effect in 1920.

In anticipation of this new law, a resident of Waite Hill purchased $30,000 worth of liquor to keep himself and his friends in ‘good spirits’.  Fairport Harbor elected Dr. Amy Kankonen as Mayor in 1921 and her major election pledge was to stop the sizable bootlegging shipment going through the town.  She personally went on several raids by Federal Agents.  Thankfully this madness ended with passing of the 21st amendment to the Constitution.

Today the production of alcoholic spirits in all forms is alive and well in Lake County.


Visit Lake County  Visitor's Bureau


Seven Brothers Distillery

Seven Brothers is a new breed of artisan distillery that is locally owned and made right here in Cleveland, Ohio. We use all natural, locally grown ingredients whenever possible along with select natural ingredients from local purveyors. Our mission is to bring bold, innovative, natural, and flavorful hand-crafted premium spirits to the Ohio market and beyond.

Red Eagle Distillery

Located in the heart of Lake Erie's Grand River Valley, Red Eagle Distillery is surrounded by a rich history of wine and spirits.  Locals tell stories of relatives making booze in barns during prohibition, and families have been making wine in the region for over 100 years.  Red Eagle Distillery carries on this tradition by stilling our spirits in a beautiful barn that dates back to the 1800's.  We've carefully preserved the original interior to create the perfect atmosphere for enjoying our spirits.

Tom's Foolery

Tom’s Foolery began as a hobby: a barn, a still, and a family with passion for quality and tradition. Today, we are a traditional American distillery, where we make great products from scratch and share the experience with friends. All of our spirits are pot-distilled in the heart of America’s Snowbelt.


The Brew Mentor

The Brew Mentor Is Lake County's (Mentor, Ohio) only beer and wine Home Brewing Supply Shop. Come by and check out all the varieties of beer or wine you can make yourself, or come and make wine on premise for that special occasion.


Visit Lake County  Visitor's Bureau

Cornerstone Brewery

located in Madison, Ohio. Widely know as "wine country" Cornerstone wanted to offer what all of the weary travelers who trudge through wine country and realize that a glass of pinot noir won't cut it. Located on Main St. in downtown Madison, Cornerstone has become a hub of activity and a staple for quenching that dire need for a well-crafted ale and some hearty food.

Double Wing Brewing Co.

Double Wing Brewing Co. is the brewery built into Debonné Vineyards winery in Madison, Ohio. After years of producing good beers that had a rat on the label, we decided that maybe, just maybe that image was not so appetizing….so, Cellar Rats Brewery has been replaced by Double Wing Brewing Co. and all of the old recipes have been either modified or just replaced. So with the old Rat gone, the new name and logo came from Tony’s love of flying. Double Wing Brewing Co. has started over again with all new brews!

Willoughby Brewing Co.

Yeah, We've won some beer awards and major ones at that. However, we are not stopping there. We work everyday to give you world class beers you deserve.


Grand River Cellars

Grand River Cellars was first established in 1976 known at that time as the Grand River Wine Company. Inside Grand River Cellars Winery & Restaurant you will be welcomed by a warm and inviting atmosphere that includes a beautiful fireplace, many hand-painted murals, and a large bar area for friends to gather. The winery offers a large variety of appetizers, grilled sandwiches, and a well-rounded dinner menu.

Laurentia Winery

Our estate wines have won some of the most prestigious awards in the country.
We are proud to bring more recognition to the Grand River Valley, and are excited to celebrate these winning veritals with you!

Debonne Vineyards

Located in Madison, Ohio about an hour east of Cleveland, Debonne Vineyards is now the largest estate winery in Ohio, boasting over 175 acres of vines. Debonne Vineyards is also the first Ohio winery to open up a micro-brewery.

South River Vineyard

Many know us as the "church winery" because our winery is housed in a century old church that originally sat in Shalersville, Ohio. Now operating as a boutique winery in Harpersfield, Ohio since 2002, South River Vineyard has established itself as a quiet, relaxing, and most unique place to enjoy a fantastic view of the vineyards with quality wine and good company.


Visit Lake County  Visitor's Bureau

Spirits in Willoughby

In Downtown Willoughby, “Spirits in Willoughby” makes a clever play on words between alcohol and the haunting of the Willoughby Coal building (which sits behind the winery). “Spirits” makes its own seven wines on premise. One white and six reds. Our menu contains appetizers and sweets. Eighteen beers on tap and assorted spirits, huge patio, two bocce ball courts, gazebo with gas fire pit and plenty of free parking!

St. Joseph Vineyard

St. Joseph Vineyard was the first winery in our region to grow and make Pinot Noir in 1986 (and win awards in California competitions for our reds) and it is one of the few eastern U.S. wineries to be mentioned in "The Book on Pinot Noirs of North America".

Cask 307

Welcome! Please feel free to stop in to see our new facility and sample our selection of incredible wines and craft beers!


Maple Ridge Vineyard

Small, family-owned vineyard and winery specializing in estate bottled, European-style dry wines.

Ferrante Winery & Ristorante

Visit one of Northeast Ohio's largest wineries with full service Italian restaurant, producing premium estate grown wines.  Enjoy a glass of wine on our outdoor patio.  Tour our state of the art wine making facility.  Plan your family gathering.  Visit our tasting room open 7 days a week.  Open year round.  Live weekend entertainment.

M Cellars Winery

A family-owned boutique winery offering internationally award-winning cool climate Estate Wines. 

Benny Vino Urban Winery

Benny Bucci opened Benny Vino Urban Winery in July 2010 with a vision of creating an urban style winery. In his first year of opening, we were awarded the Best Urban Winery in Cleveland by Cleveland Magazine. Benny has never lost sight of his passion and that is to produce award winning wines.

Lake County As A Destination

Doc Howard’s Distillery is just one stop in “Amazing Lake County”. Plan a weekend in Lake County, which includes Doc’s, to have enough time to experience all of ‘good spirits’ and other attractions in Lake County. Visit the Lake County Visitors Bureau website (website link), the Eastern Lake County Chamber of Commerce (website link), Mentor Area Chamber of Commerce (website link) and the Western Lake County Chamber of Commerce (website link) to discover all of the experiences available in Lake County.  To make your stay relaxing and rewarding the following accommodations are recommended:








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