About Us

Madison County Distillery is a family owned, artisan distillery located on a 200-year old historic farm called, “The Maples.” It is located on Route 20 East one mile outside the quaint Village of Cazenovia in Central New York. This start-up sits on the family’s 90-acre farm which features pure Marcellus-shale spring water, organically-farmed pastures and wooded hiking trails. The distillery is hosted in a 5,000-square-foot rustic barn featuring a production area replete with a 200-gallon cooper still pot made in Germany, two tasting rooms and spectacular views of the farm. The open layout of Madison County Distillery and its vaulted ceiling allow guests to view the process of cooking the mash, distilling the alcohol, bottling and packaging the products in old-world small batch fashion. It will also offer tours for the public and product samples. There is a second-floor loft that overlooks the machinery offering a relaxed setting for listening to music and visiting with friends while enjoying some local spirits and featuring foods from the area that complement the spirits. Madison County Distillery can also serve as a great venue for intimate private parties and has an outdoor seating area for all to enjoy when weather permits.

Mike “Coach” Basla grew up in Syracuse, NY.  He was a high school math teacher, football coach, 35+ year Air Force officer, defense industry executive and now entrepreneur.  He has four adult children from his first wife Barbara who passed away after their 39+ year marriage.  He married Rebecca Smithson in March of 2014.  She hails from Virginia.  Mike and Rebecca have a Golden Doodle named Buckley and nine grandchildren ranging from babies to teens.  The family is scattered between NY, DC, NC and Germany.  His community work includes speaking with wounded warriors, mentoring students and serving on the AFCEA International Executive Board of Directors and Armed Services YMCA Board of Directors.  He holds three master’s degrees and a Bachelor of Science in mathematics from the University of New York, Albany, which named him their 2015 Distinguished Alumnus.

Adam Basla was raised in a Military family and had the opportunity to travel and live overseas as a child.  It wasn’t until 12 years of age that his family moved to the Northern Virginia area where he spent his teenage years before attending Virginia Tech.  After graduating in 2002 with a degree in Business Information Technology, Adam returned to the Northern Virginia area and began working as an Information Technology Professional.  Having lived overseas as a child, he was eager for more international experiences.  In 2008, Adam moved to Vicenza, Italy where he discovered a passion for travel and experiencing other cultures through food and beverages.  It was here in Italy that he met his wife Wendy who was serving as an Army Officer at the time, and they continued travelling together throughout Europe and even spent time in Asia.  Throughout all these travels, they researched and experienced local wines, beers, cocktails and spirits; often visiting family owned and operated producers inspired by the dream that is now Madison County Distillery.  Adam and Wendy now live in Germany with their two young sons experiencing Europe as a family, but intend to return to the United States around 2020 and plan to spend more time on the farm and working in the distillery.

Patrick Ruddy