When Manzanita Brewing Company moved from their original Santee location, which is now home to Butcher's Brewing, to another location nearby, they had some big plans for the 12,000-square-foot space: to expand their tasting room, install a new 30 barrel brewhouse for production of their six year round beers and special releases, and build out a distillery, a passion project for company president Jeff Trevaskis.
Now, the 3,000-square-foot distillery is gearing up to introduce its first small-batch spirits to the market. By September, Manzanita Distilling Company will launch their SoCal Shine, a smooth cane-based "moonshine" that head distiller Jake Pitman says is somewhere between a vodka and a rum.
Pitman, whose brother Garry is Manzanita's co-founder and former brewmaster, has been busy on their 1,000 gallon custom-built copper still; next summer should see a flurry of releases from the distillery. A rye will be the first of their five planned whiskeys to debut; also in the works, a potato vodka, all natural orange vodka and an oak aged version, plus white and barrel-aged rum.
Trevaskis, who likened the potential for the current craft spirits culture to boom like the craft beer industry, is himself perfecting a few varieties of limoncello, all at different proofs.
· Manzanita Distilling Company [Facebook]
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