Made in Alaska: Bare Distillery
ANCHORAEG - Yo-Yo Ma and Bach filled the air at the Bare Distillery on Wednesday morning.
It was probably a good sound-track choice for the team, whose nerves were a little high, as they bottled the first batch of Truuli Peak Vodka produced using new million dollar equipment in their South Anchorage facility.
The business has made small, consistent steps since its inception seven years ago and will soon be expanded even further. The goal is to produce 40,000 bottles a month.
“We started off very small with a very small warehouse, and we started to put our equipment together piece by piece,” Kyle Ryan who founded the business with Jeremy Loyer.
It’s the only distillery in Anchorage -- the pair had to cut their way through plenty of municipality red tape to get a permit, and the vodka is produced using only Alaskan ingredients.
“95 percent barley from Delta Junction and 5 percent Chugiak wildflower honey,” said Loyer. The water is from a Eklutna Lake.
Loyer says, from grain to glass, it's a challenge he was destined to take on.
"I was born in a bar and when I watch 'Jeopardy' the only questions I get are the liquor questions,” he said.
It takes around one week to produce 3,000 bottles of vodka,
A team of five -- including Loyer and Ryan -- oversees the numerous stages of production.
Ryan said it all comes down to teamwork and a successful relationship with his business partner Loyer.
"We definitely look at things from two different angles and amazingly enough there’s not a lot of arguments and our discussions end up with forward progress,” said Ryan.
“We want to be able to place this up against anything else that's out there,” said Ryan, who plans to put the product on the world market.