Webinar: Unconventional Distillates
When?: Wednesday, February 23rd from 3-4 PM Eastern time
What?: Hear lessons learned and best practices from the pioneers thinking outside of the box.
How much?: Free to ACSA members, $59 for non-members
Aleksandr Zhdanov, 3BR Distillery
Aleksandr is the Head Distiller and Co-Founder of 3BR Distillery. The unconventional Soviet-inspired distillery specializes in pea-based spirits and other unusual spirits. Aleks draws inspiration from his grandfather, who moonshined for his whole neighborhood during the Soviet prohibition, using peas as part of his sugar source. This family recipe was an accidental discovery for Aleks after his mom caught him (allegedly) moonshining and compared him to his grandfather. That’s how MENDEL vodka and GOROVKA were born. After opening 3BR Distillery, Aleks has been expanding his experience with “unconventional” distillates, including a hopped-agave distillate, a sugar cane + prune juice spirit, and a 100% maple syrup distillate. Aleks has many more interesting plans for future distillates and loves to play with flavors and put twists on classics.
Béla Náhori, ChainBridge Distillery
Béla Náhori is the co-founder and distiller of ChainBridge Distillery.
Béla “comes from a wine-making family in the iconic Tokaj region near Hungary’s northeastern border with Slovakia” (Craft Spirits Magazine). Béla grew up with the culture of Pálinka, a Hungarian eau de vie style fruit brandy that inspires the entire process and approach of crafting all the spirits at ChainBridge Distillery.
Béla learned how to process the fresh fruits using traditional Hungarian techniques at an early age from his grandparents from both sides of his family. His family owned a vineyard and had a small fruit orchard with fruit trees and shrubs most notably quince trees and currant shrubs.
After moving to the USA, Béla spent 20 years living in Ohio where he got his Master’s in accounting from Baldwin Wallace University and worked at both regional and international public accounting firms.
The craft distilling movement in USA and his background inspired the family to open ChainBridge Distillery in Florida where his family has moved.
Béla started distilling eau de vie style brandies and his first batch ever distilled at ChainBridge Distillery was their Williams Pear Brandy that won the Best in Show and Gold Medal at the American Craft Spirits Association Awards in 2020. Since then, most of ChainBridge Distillery spirits became award winning and most recently the Florida Basil Vodka “flavored with two different varieties of basil grown on Florida farms” (Forbes) won best in category for botanical vodka by the American Distilling Institute. In the past 3 years, Béla expanded the distillery’s portfolio from eau de vie style fruit brandies to Botanical Vodkas (Florida Basil Vodka and Florida Ginger Vodka) made with fresh basil and ginger, Gins, Rums (Sour Cherry Spiced Rum) made with real sour cherries and Specialty Spirits distilled from beets and carrots.