From 1909–35, North Carolina was a dry state—meaning the only alcohol we could imbibe was what someone's papa concocted on the sly, by the light of the moon, savored out of a mason jar. (You know the stuff.)
Now, despite North Carolina's history of teetotal laws and bootlegging outlaws, only one dry county remains. (Solidarity with Graham County.) Still, we're among the nearly twenty states that have a stringent control on liquor sales through the Alcoholic Beverage Control Commission. What does this mean for transplants? There's no corner bodega to grab a bottle of liquor with your smokes. You'll have to hit up a state store, and it won't be open on Sunday. (Actually, you can't buy anything alcoholic before noon on Sundays, as the state would prefer you to be in church.)
What we do have, though, are a slew of bars, breweries, distilleries, and wine shops pushing the envelope. Just as we relish our foodie identity, North Carolinians know how to knock one back with just as much zeal and creativity as we know how to smoke a whole hog.
In DRINK, we present the most imaginative ideas surrounding alcohol in our state: handcrafted and locally sourced liquors, a full roundup of our most interesting wines and community-focused breweries, and advice from bartenders about what to drink at home. If drinking's not your vice of choice, we've got original recipes for you, too. Bake with your favorite flavor of booze or indulge in homemade mocktails. Whatever you fancy, we've got a reason to clink our glasses. — Victoria Bouloubasis