The black sheep in the distillery

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This week in Omnivorous I wrote about the husband-and-wife team of Robert Birnecker and Sonat Birnecker Hart, who recently opened the doors on the city's only craft microdistillery, Koval. What's in the name? According to Sonat, a former professor of Jewish Studies, in some Yiddish dialects koval can mean "blacksmith." But it can also refer to someone who does something out of the ordinary--which is to say, a "black sheep." She says they chose it in part for the memory of her grandfather, who left the Old World when times were good and whose family thought he was nuts for doing so. But he prospered here, and when times got tough he was able to bring many of them over.

The couple, who left secure jobs on the east coast to start the distillery, hope their fortune mirrors his.

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