Manhattan-based distillery turns sustainable basil from indoor urban farming company Square Roots into limited-edition spirit

/PRNewswire/ — Today, Our/New York – Manhattan’s first distillery since Prohibition and producer of small batch, high-quality vodka – is unveiling its innovative basil-infused vodka, created with real basil sourced locally in New York City. The small batch infusion uses surplus basil from Brooklyn-based urban farm Square Roots, in partnership with transformational non-profit Rethink Food, to add a gentle basil flavor to the spirit. Our/New York Basil will be released in a limited run of 1,800 bottles, and is now available in select retailers, bars, and restaurants across New York City.

“We’re thrilled to align with local partners to repurpose this beautiful ingredient and use it to create something truly unique – a ‘sustainable spirit’,” said Dave Ortiz, local partner of Our/New York. “Working with a fresh ingredient like basil is an intricate process, requiring a lot of time and care to get just right. It’s a complex, yet familiar flavor that makes for a really compelling drink on its own or in any number of cocktails.”

Our/New York developed the unique infusion in partnership with Rethink Food, whose mission is to create a more sustainable and equitable food system by transforming excess food into nutritious meals for communities impacted by food insecurity. The project demonstrates how New Yorkers can come together to repurpose otherwise perishable products into exciting new initiatives.

“There is a collective urgency to create lasting change in our food system, especially in such challenging times,” said Matt Jozwiak, Rethink Food’s Founder and CEO. “We are very excited to be partnering with Our/New York and Square Roots to reduce food waste and raise awareness on food insecurity.” 

To create Our/New York Basil, the basil is hand-chopped and added to a mixture of base spirit and water, before allowing it to infuse for 24 hours. The infused liquid is filtered and distilled to remove the basil itself, while keeping the distinct flavor. The basil distillate is then blended with triple-filtered New York City water and a corn-based neutral spirit; and finally, hand-bottled, all in their distillery on 26th Street. Our/New York Basil will be available in a limited run beginning April 2021 at select retailers, bars and restaurants throughout New York City, which can be found at

Our/New York is the first distillery in Manhattan since Prohibition and is part of the Our/Vodka family of urban micro-distilleries. The distillery plans to unveil additional collaborations in the future, with the goal of creating compelling products through partnerships with local artists, urban farms and in everything in between. Learn more about the distillery at

About Our/Vodka
Our/Vodka is a Pernod Ricard-funded venture that prides itself in crafting exceptional vodka while celebrating the world’s greatest cities. Through its small batch distilleries in city centers, and by collaborating with local individuals and organizations, Our/Vodka is injecting local flavor, globally. Each of its distilleries is united by a single recipe that allows Our/Vodka to stand out from the rest. The unique location of the distilleries in downtown LA and NYC allows them to connect with metropolitan culture in a way that others can’t – by being a part of the story that their cities tell, every single day.

About Our/New York
Our/New York is a vodka distillery located in the heart of Manhattan, New York City and is part of Our/Vodka — a family of urban micro-distilleries. Our/New York was the first legal distillery to open in Manhattan since Prohibition, and prides itself on creating world-class spirits that celebrate NYC. It is born out of a partnership between Our/Vodka and local New York skatewear entrepreneur Dave Ortiz, founder of local skate and fixed gear companies DQM (Dave’s Quality Meat) and Dave’s Wear House. For more information, visit, or follow them on Instagram (@ournewyorkvodka).

About Rethink Food
Rethink Food is a nonprofit whose mission is to create a more sustainable and equitable food system. Founded in 2017, Rethink Food developed a process to transform excess food from restaurants, corporate kitchens, and grocery stores into nutritious meals and distribute them via community-based organizations (CBOs). With food insecurity escalating and restaurants facing widespread closures during the pandemic, Rethink Food leveraged its experience as a food rescue and distribution model to launch Rethink Certified, a partnership program that provides grants and resources to local restaurants, so they can prepare community meals as a part of their daily operation. The purpose is twofold: feed local communities and keep restaurants in business, not just in times of crisis. Since the launch of the program in April 2020, Rethink Food has provided over 2.4 million meals for those impacted by food insecurity, partnered with 55 restaurants, and invested over $12M into local restaurants and communities. Rethink Food also utilizes two other practical models to reduce food insecurity across communities: The Rethink Café, a donation-based cafe that invites everyone to enjoy a nutritious meal for a suggested donation of $5, and the Rethink Commissary, which converts donated food items into nutritious meals to deliver to CBOs at no cost. For more information, visit Follow Rethink Food on InstagramFacebook & Twitter.

About Square Roots
Square Roots is a leader in urban indoor farming. Its scalable farm-tech platform brings fresh, local food to urban areas year-round. With active farms in Brooklyn NY, and Grand Rapids MI (with more to come in 2021), Square Roots has a mission to bring local, real food to people in cities across the world while empowering the next generation of leaders in urban farming. For more information, visit, or follow them on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook at @squarerootsgrow.

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