Ryan Avent:

The craft distillery business is booming in the District of Columbia, as it is around the country. Within the context of industrialised economies as a whole, these businesses represent a drop in the sea. On one estimate, craft spirits account for roughly 2% of the American market. Yet they are part of a growing movement that is transforming the consumer economy in cities around the world. The District’s first winery opened not long ago, and the city’s bars inevitably carry several locally brewed beers on draught. There are craft-made pickles and craft-roasted coffee beans. There are craft, nose-to-tail butchers selling cuts of locally raised beef. There are potters and leatherworkers. There are traditional barbershops, which will cut your hair and trim your handlebar moustache, and tailors who will make an appropriately Victorian suit to go with it. There are – no joke – sellers of artisanal ice.