Last week I had the pleasure of taking a tour through David and Dorit Nahmias‘ distillery in Yonkers, NY (video to follow). Nahmias et Fils produces a distinctive, delicious, fig based uniquely Jewish, Moroccan liqueur – Mahia – and an un-aged unique white whiskey produced from rye – Legs Diamond.
David Nahmias is fulfilling his lifelong dream of continuing in his family’s footsteps; his father, his uncles, proud descendants from a long line of Moroccan tzaddikim and rabbanim produced Mahia in Morocco, their ancestral home. When Dorit lost her job as a banker, both she and her husband took it as a sign that they should establish the old family business right here in the US. The distillery has only been in production for just over 5 months and its products already appear in stores shelves in the New York area and in various California cities.
As you walk through their facility, while smelling the strong aroma of fermented figs, you feel immediately transported to Morocco, with authentic fabric covered low seats, with wall decorations that light up your imagination and give you visions of life in a more innocent, more beautiful, more hospitable setting, far from the hustle and bustle of New York.
Mahia is a liqueur made from figs and aniseed, it tasted just sweet enough without its sweetness being overpowering. It would go great as an accompaniment to a dessert, to a somewhat salty cheese or just by itself. Both SYR and I, found it delightful!
When I first saw the bottle of white, un-aged, un-oaked, white rye whiskey, I thought I’d be tasting something resembling a strong vodka. In any case, I thought (being used to aged single malt scotches) that the Legs Diamond would not only burn my throat, but probably even burn a hole as it worked its way down the pipes. I was pleasantly surprised when this whiskey made from mashed, fermented and carefully distilled grain, turned out to be incredibly smooth and left me with a hint of sweetness.
Nahmias et Fils will be coming out with more products soon, including aged whiskey, an apple based liqueur and more. If their first two offering are an example of their craft, I can’t wait to sample whatever else they’ll produce!