Introduction to the Over Proof Laboratory


My name is Barry Young and I am a distiller and former pharmacist. I distill some of the best white spirits in the world including over-proof versions of my flagship spirits – Boyd & Blair Professional Proof 151 and BLY Rum 105 Proof Silver. I have always believed that just because one CAN distill any spirit does not always mean one SHOULD.  As we all know, there are a lot of products on the market that perhaps should not be.

I came up with the idea of producing high proof spirits because I saw a need in the market for base spirits that were not just high in alcohol content, but also high in quality!  My over-proof spirts are clean and made with the same care as their 80 proof versions.  I want people to be able to create any liqueur, bitter or cordial that they desire. 

I have made a lot of products over the years using my over proof spirits and want to share the love through my recipes, techniques and ideas. I am hoping you will also share yours.  I will share recipes that I have recently tried as well as ones I have found in a 100- year-old pharmacy manual that has extraordinary recipes for bitters and cordials from the 19th century!   I promise that all will be intriguing enough for you to want to try, and none of them will be too complicated.  Thank you for following.  Let me introduce you to my spirits:

Boyd & Blair Professional Proof 151

My 151 is made from the same local potatoes as my 80-proof version and is actually distilled and filtered the exact same way.  The only difference is the amount of water (or lack thereof) in the 151 version. The 151 is nearly double (1.89 times as strong in proof) that of 80 proof Boyd & Blair. When I distill vodka all of the cuts are made directly by taste off of the still while it is running at 190 proof.  This job is not for the weak at heart!  At 151 proof (only 4% water) one can legally taste what I enjoy off of the still and the taste is delicious!  The vodka is chewy and sweet and YES IT HAS HEAT (because it is 151 proof after all!) but it is very easy to taste neat. Because the alcohol is so clean and pure, I liken it to a liquid magnet that can quickly and cleanly pick up the flavors of whatever you choose to infuse it with. Your time, effort and money will be in good hands.  Trust me.  And just so you know, Boyd & Blair Professional Proof is available in 750ml and 375ml sizes.

BLY 105

My 105 proof rum is made from the same great Pennsylvania supreme baking molasses as the BLY 80 Proof is but with 31% more alcohol. At this proof it is a great base to use for house made liqueurs that will be mixed with rum for cocktails or to lend a tropical flavor to any spirit base cocktail. It is not as high proof as it’s sister spirit, Boyd & Blair Professional Proof 151, and this makes it more of a gentler base with subtler and sweeter overtones. By working with tropical components such as chili peppers, coconut and Thai lime leaves, we will explore the development of some insanely delicious liqueurs. BLY 105 Proof is available in 750ml bottles.