After five years in business, Moon Under Water Brewery is experimenting with distilling spirits. Photo contributed

The tide is turning at Moon Under Water

Local craft brewery will branch into distilling spririts starting with gin and vodka, followed by whisky

Anyone who knows even the slightest thing about craft beer knows the industry has seen explosive growth over the past few years.

While some breweries have branched out to making cider, Clay Potter, co-owner of Moon Under Water Brewery and Pub, has his eye on spirits. The local brewery announced they will start distilling gin, vodka and whisky in the late fall and open a tasting room to sample their liquors.

Sales manager Andrew Reesor says Potter has always had an interest in distilling, so the expansion is a natural next step for the business.

“He’s been doing some test batches and searching for local ingredients to flavour [the spirits],” Reesor says. “He’s excited to get going.”

When the business next to Moon Under Water vacated recently, Reesor says they jumped at the opportunity to grow into the space. Adding a bigger cooler in the former loading bay will make room for two new brite tanks in the brewery, and that means more offerings for seasonal brews.

Head brewer Jeff Koehl will maintain the beer side of things to allow Potter, a licensed distiller, to focus on the new project.

The plan has come together quite ‘fast and furious’ Reesor says; they’ve purchased one still and for now, the tasting room will be the only place to sample or purchase their spirits. The goal is to get a lounge licence so eventually craft beer nerds and liquor aficionados can drink together and head next door to the pub for a bite. And, they’re primed to bottle their line of spirits so they’re available to take home.

Moon Under Water just celebrated their fifth anniversary and will be at the Great Canadian Beer Festival this weekend.

kristyn.anthony@vicnews.com

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