Located just north of bustling Daytona Beach in the city of Holly Hill, Copper Bottom Craft Distillery is a family-run business that produces small-batch rum and vodka from unrefined sugar cane. This city has historical ties to rum: it was once home to famous rum runner Bill McCoy and Three Chimneys in nearby Ormond Beach is known as the oldest successful British sugar plantation and rum distillery in the United States.
Instead of using molasses to make rum, Copper Bottom uses raw, unrefined sugar which is fermented and then distilled once in a copper kettle still and then sent through a copper column still. To make their Silver Rum, the final distillate is proofed down with filtered water and there are no additives for color or flavor. It is a light, clean rum with notes of vanilla and butterscotch. For the Gold Rum, the same distillate is aged for about 18 months in once-used bourbon barrels and has a more complex, oaky flavor with enhanced vanilla notes.
Copper Bottom also partners with local craft breweries to obtain beer barrels which are used to produce their limited release Beer Barreled Rum series. These are typically limited to one batch of approximately 350 bottles and each series inherits some of the unique characteristics of the beer that the barrel previously held. The labels are hand-written and indicate the type of beer barrel used, ABV, and the name of the brewery.
Copper Bottom Vodka is made using the same raw sugar but is distilled using a taller, stainless steel column still. It is light and fresh and makes an excellent base for high-quality cocktails.
Check out the Copper Bottom Craft Distillery website for more information about their products and free distillery tours:
Dating back to 1959, the Daytona International Speedway was built as an alternative to drag racing on the beach. One of the most famous automobile races, the Daytona 500, is held here every February. It is also the location of the Rolex 24, a 24-hour race combining NASCAR, IndyCar, and Formula 1 that is regarded as the most prestigious race in North America. When there isn't a race happening, you can tour the speedway and the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America.
At Ponce Inlet, you can climb 203 steps to the top of Florida's tallest lighthouse and enjoy panoramic views of the inlet. Or visit the Marine Science Center to learn about local fauna and explore the nature tail to see many species of migratory birds. There's also excellent surfing and other water activities including deep sea fishing and scenic boat tours along the Intracoastal Waterway.
When the tide recedes here, the sun-baked sand is solid enough for regular cars to drive on. For a small fee, you can cruise at 10 miles per hour across the sand next to the ocean, a unique activity limited to only a few locations in the United States. Park right on the sand and take a stroll to the Daytona Beach fishing pier - there is no fee to enter and no license is required. There is an expansive boardwalk here with games, snacks, and fireworks every Saturday night during the summer.