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Distillery Gears Up for Milledgeville Opening | News

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Distillery Gears Up for Milledgeville Opening
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A new business plans to tap into an industry that they say will keep the glasses half full in Milledgeville.

It's just a matter of time before the Georgia Distilling Company bottles up its first product.

Starting a new business is no light load.

"This thing is heavy as all get out," says Georgia Distilling Company Co-Founder, Shawn Hall, as he lifts a barrel.
But for Hall, tapping into Central Georgia's first distillery means a flow of business.

"It's handcrafting something that people will enjoy and people can identify with," says Hall.

He's no stranger to creating alcohol. It's something he says runs in the family.

"I got to listen to it all throughout my life. I got to hear the stories of it, the good, the bad. It's what they did."

But he'll be adding new recipes to the family's moonshine and eventually stocking the shelves with whiskey, gin, rum and other liquors.

Most of which, he says have a special connection to the peach state.

"No one will be able to say, 'Well, that's not made from Georgia.' It's made from Georgia peaches. We're only gonna make it when we can," he says of the company's anticipated peach flavored liquor.

Hall says the building they're using, just off Blandy Road, was originally built as an ammunition factory during World War II.

He says right now they're just using the back portion, but they hope to expand to the front as well, which will add another 10,000 square feet to the distillery.

He says when it comes to creating alcohol, it boils down to organic chemistry.

"For our whiskeys, we have to cook the grain to extract the starch. And this is a 1,000 gallon jacketed steam kettle that we'll be using for that," he says.

Hall says they hope to fill the first bottles of moonshine next month and bring tourists pouring in soon after.

Hall says through taxes, Milledgeville and Baldwin County will make around 80 cents for every six-bottle pack the distillery sells.

He says right now, they're looking to hire around ten people, but that number could grow after they start brewing.

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