6-Day Distiller Course

Course Overview

Join 40+ industry experts under one roof for an intensive, practical, and hands-on learning experience unlike any other in the world. This six-day course combines technical spirits training and business management education for start-ups, industry professionals, and enthusiasts looking for a career in the distilling industry.

Designed and taught by distillery operators, industry insiders, and world-renowned master distillers, this course exposes attendees to the realities of day-to-day distilling operations — from laying the first brick to getting a finished product on the shelf. Each day will focus on a different set of distilling skills and considerations, complimented by a panel of industry experts who will provide you with their unique insider perspectives. Topics will cover everything from developing your business plan and constructing your distillery, to navigating regulatory entities, to developing and marketing your brand story. We’ll also explore equipment selection, manufacturing and distribution channels, financial considerations, and other significant challenges and opportunities in the business.

Of course, you won’t miss out on any of the fun stuff: you’ll get to explore the science of spirits production while getting your hands dirty distilling whiskey, rum, vodka, and gin, and examining bridge spirits at our on-campus beverage development lab. We’ll explore the history, category styles, production methods and distillation processes, as well as mash bills, maceration, fermenting, distilling, and finishing.

Tours and networking receptions — including visits to Vendome Copper & Brass Works facility and Copper & Kings Distillery — are scheduled throughout the week to further enrich your professional and learning experiences. In addition to gaining industry and personal connections to last a lifetime, you can look forward to a brief graduation ceremony where you’ll get to bottle the very whiskey you helped create — and toast to a week well spent!


Who This Class Is For

Whether you’re a seasoned distiller or newbie to the business, this class is for anyone who has or is planning to open and/or operate a distillery; production team members; vendors looking to better understand their distiller customers; or anyone else interested in refining their knowledge of the distilling process and industry as a whole.


Your Instructors

In addition to Moonshine University and Flavorman staff, other instructors and panelists may include: Randy Allender, Owner and Manager at R. Allender Consulting; Pete Kamer, Principal of Distillery Engineering; Luis Ayala, Rum Consultant at Rum Runner Press, Inc. and Co-Founder of Rum University and Got Rum Magazine; Steve Beam, Distiller & President at Limestone Branch; David Carpenter, Distiller and Master Blender at Deutsch Family Wine & Spirits; Elizabeth McCall, Assistant Master Distiller at Woodford Reserve; Jim McCoy, Principal at J. McCoy Alcohol & Tobacco Compliance Consultants; Paul McLaughlin, VP & General Counsel at Kelvin Cooperage; James Moore, Technical Research Scientist at Beam-Suntory; Chris Morris, Master Distiller at Woodford Reserve Distillery; Jimmy Russell, Master Distiller at Wild Turkey Bourbon Distillery; Bill Samuels, Jr., Chairman Emeritus at Maker’s Mark; Mike and Rob Sherman, Vice President and 4th generation Co-Owner of Vendome Copper & Brass Works, Inc.; Chris Zaborowski, Partner at Westport Whiskey & Wine; Andrew Wiehebrink, Director of Spirit Research & Innovation at Independent Stave Company; Carson Taylor, President at Peerless Distilling; Justin Thomas, President at G&D Chillers; David Timmons, Senior Chemist at Brown-Forman; Paul Tomaszewski, Co-Founder and Head Distiller at MB Roland Distillery; Molly Wellmann, Co-Owner at Wellmann’s Brands; Lisa Wicker, Distiller and Principal at Saints & Monsters, LLC; and many more.


What You’ll Learn

In addition to gaining valuable insights on the distilling process and the industry as a whole, we’ll go into depth on:

    • Site Selection & Construction;
    • Equipment Selection;
    • Permitting & Compliance;
    • Production — Rum, Whiskey, Vodka & Gin;
    • Aging & Finishing;
    • Distillery Best Practices;
    • Bridge Spirits;
    • Business Management;
    • Branding & Marketing;
    • Packaging;
    • Manufacturing, Distribution & Retail.


Get Your Class On

Tuition includes all class materials, including a 1,000-page resource binder and Distiller’s Sensory Kit; breakfast, lunch, and refreshments; attendance to exclusive tours and networking receptions throughout the week; and transportation between our contracted hotel and our campus. $6,550

**Early Bird Registration covers your stay at our contracted hotel from Day 1 to the last day of class. The Early Bird deadline is 3 weeks before the first day of class.

About Moonshine University

Founded in 2012, Moonshine University is the nation’s premier educational distillery. Our facility was created from the ground up to teach new distillers how to get started in the industry, and to teach professional team members how to elevate key aspects of their craft and boost sales. Combining classroom instruction with practical, hands-on learning and sensory training, Moonshine University attracts people from all over the world, ensuring every attendee leaves with a complete and comprehensive education and skill set applicable to a variety of spirits and industry related areas.

In 2013, The Kentucky Distillers’ Association made Moonshine University their exclusive education provider. With the support of some of the industry’s leading institutions and distilleries, you can be sure that taking a class at Moonshine University will be worth the investment.

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