September 28th, 2014
We had our soft opening this past Sunday at Old Harbor Distilling Company. Many of our friends and family came out to support our endeavor. My good friend Matt Lyons of Tribute Pizza came out to sling the best pies in all the seven seas. It has been 108 weeks of hard work to get to this point. For the last nine months my good friend and VP of Operations, Ricky Warner, has been helping me out a ton. Over the last few weeks I have had an outpouring of support from friends: Mikey, Jeff, Gareth, Cody, Greg, Kevin, Kaylie, Jason, Dieter, and I am sure many more who I am forgetting. My Mom & Dad and Grandparents have supported me through it all as well. It takes a village they say.
The date September 28th was very important for me, it has been a goal of mine to open on this day because it has some real historical significance, not only for San Diego but California. Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo landed on our shores on this day in 1542. He went on to christen the port, San Miguel, after the saint whose feast had taken place the day before. We also released our Southwestern Gin, which is aptly titled San Miguel, this day. So in a way that makes it historical for us too!
Naming the Still
Like any good ship, we decided that it would be appropriate for our still to have a proper name. Something nautical, classic, perhaps not too serious. The choices were from epic tales: Moby Dick, The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou & 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.
A Nantucket Whaler, she has seen many years of use and it is apparent. She has three masts, all of which are replacements due to a typhoon off the coast of Japan. Many parts have been replaced by whale bones. It is weathered and rough, but has a certain nobility to it. The “cursed” ship of Captain Ahab, he stopped at nothing to capture his white whale, we would not have stopped at anything to catch our White Whale either… damn tasty craft spirits!
She was a long range sub-hunter during the second world war, which was bought from the US Government for 900,000 Dollars. The sauna was designed by an engineer from the Chinese Space Program & they keep a Swedish masseuse on staff. It has a top notch research library, including a complete original set of the Life Aquatic Companion Series. There are two Albano scouts that swim with the ship, they are supposedly very intelligent, but have never seen any hints of it.
Designed and fabricated by Captain Nemo himself. The Nautilus is a ship of unimaginable capabilities. Double hulled with further separated internal compartments, she can obtain speeds up to 50 knots. The submarine has a pointed ramming rod that it uses for attacks. It is not with out many luxuries however: a library with boxed collections of valuable oceanic specimens that are unknown to science at the time, expensive paintings, and several collections of jewels. It’s parts are built to order around the world then brought to a desert island to be fabricated by Nemo’s men. In some way’s our distillery was fashioned in the same manner.
That means that our fermentors will be named for it’s crew: Ned “Kingsley” Zissou, Klaus Daimler & Pele dos Santos. We will add more crew members in the near future.