The Art + Science of Distilling

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The Scotsman: Creatives at Scottish branding agency among renowned faculty at Moonshine University

Creative Directors at an Edinburgh-based branding agency are now making regular transatlantic crossings to teach at Moonshine University.

The Scotsman recently profiled Jason Dobson and Jason Milne, Creative Directors at Contagious in Scotland and regular instructors of our intensive 6-Day Distiller Course. Attracting students from around the globe, the course currently boasts over 700 graduates who have launched an impressive 160+ distilleries worldwide.

The course covers everything from developing a business plan and constructing a distillery, to navigating regulatory entities and, of course, distilling spirits like whiskey, rum, vodka, and gin.

For their part, Dobson and Milne provide students with their valuable insider’s perspective on the branding experience for the distilling industry. The role also gives Dobson and Milne the opportunity “to share our insights on the approach a business should take in the delivery of their brand home and visitor experience.”

Their agency, Contagious, has undertaken a number of high-profile, international whisky and spirits design projects – a portfolio that includes Angels Envy in Louisville, the Irish Whiskey Academy in Dublin, and Glengoyne Distillery near Loch Lomond. Because of this extensive reach and experience, Dobson and Milne are well equipped to prepare aspiring distillers and spirits professionals for the marketing endeavor involved in launching a stand-out distillery.

“When I was travelling in Ireland, I took a day to visit the Irish Whiskey Academy and I was blown away,” said Colin Blake, the charming Director of Spirits Education at Moonshine University. “It was such a beautiful, engaging, educating, well thought-out experience; so when I crossed paths with one of its designers from Contagious, the first thing I thought about was ‘how can I get this Brit to travel to Kentucky to teach a class?’”

Apparently, Dobson and Milne didn’t need too much convincing, because they now take the almost 12-hour flight from Edinburgh, Scotland, to Louisville, KY, regularly sacrificing themselves to jet lag in order to bring their expertise to the heart of bourbon country – for which the students at Moonshine University are grateful!

Whether you’re a seasoned industry insider or enthusiast looking for a second career, we hope to see you in the next class at Moonshine University! Enrolling in our one-of-a-kind 6-Day Distiller’s course not only gets you in front of the best of the best in the industry – including Dobson and Milne, and 30+ other spirits professionals – but also allows you the opportunity to apply your knowledge and skill set to hands-on distilling with our very own on-campus equipment.

You can learn more about the class by viewing our 6-Day Distiller Course trailer below, or you can check out our full list of class offerings.

This article has been adapted from The Scotsman. You can view the full, original story by Hannah Burley, here.

About our 6-Day Distiller Course

Join 30+ 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 perspective. 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, exploring bridge spirits at our on-campus 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!

See our full list of course offerings here.

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