New Guild to Break Down Craft Spirit Barriers

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(Image of co-founder Jeff Wuslich Courtesy of Cardinal Spirits.) (Image of co-founder Jeff Wuslich Courtesy of Cardinal Spirits.)

On the eve of Bloomington-based Cardinal Spirits' second anniversary, one of its co-founders has been tapped to lead an organization focused on the growing Indiana craft spirit industry. Inside INdiana Business has learned Jeff Wuslich has been named president of the Indiana Distiller's Guild, which has just approved bylaws and its inaugural team of leaders. Wuslich says the guild and other distillers throughout the state are bonded by a common goal: "we're really trying to get people to stop drinking mass-produced spirits and try to get them to try something new, unique and local."

In an interview with Inside INdiana Business, Wuslich said it's an exciting time for distillers in the state. "We definitely want there to be more craft distilleries in Indiana. We want to break down some of the barriers to entry, but also want to do some things similar to the craft brewers where we've got some marketing events, public tasking events and expositions around the state, so we can expose more people to the great distilling scene in Indiana." Ultimately, Wuslich would like the craft spirits industry to be on par in Indiana with craft beer and wine makers.

Wuslich says Cardinal Spirits currently employs 20 in Bloomington. Though he says the company intends to "double-down" on Indiana this year and expand its already statewide reach, growth outside the state is also in the works. Plans call for more Indiana distribution, as well as shipments to Chicago, parts of Michigan and Tennessee and expanding in Kentucky. "What we're really looking for is areas and cities where people understand and appreciate craft spirits. Certainly, in some of the larger areas, that's true, but some of our best accounts are in Evansville and Fort Wayne and so people really appreciate a high-quality, locally-made product throughout the state."

You can connect to more about Cardinal Spirits' two-year anniversary at the distillery's Facebook page.

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