Wild Turkey Master Distiller Jimmy Russell talking to attendees.
Wild Turkey Master Distiller Jimmy Russell talking to attendees.

Does your workplace offer a tuition-reimbursement program? We’re not suggesting that you use it to take this course… but this sounds like a heck of a lot more fun than going to night school to get your MBA.

Moonshine University is hosting a five-day Distiller’s Course October 7-11. It’s more pricey than a semester at a community college, but if you’re interested in getting involved with the bourbon industry, either at a distillery or creating a craft distillery of your own, consider the $5500 an investment in your future.

And if you register before September 1, five nights of lodging at the Brown Hotel is included in the price.

Moonshine University was established in 2011 at the Distilled Spirits Epicenter. In addition to “enthusiast” and corporate classes– classes for casual fans of booze– the micro-distillery offers professional-level, deep-diving instruction. Moonshine U is the first “educational” member of the Kentucky Distilleries Association.

The faculty list includes three master distillers, still makers, a former ATF official and other luminaries of the distilling world. According to the website, the course offers:

  • Real industry experts
  • Seasoned master distillers
  • Experienced brand experts
  • Current professional contacts
  • Legitimate suppliers to distilleries
  • Industry distributors
  • Exceptional opportunities to network
  • Endorsed by Jefferson Technical and Community College

During the class, students will distill whiskey, rum and vodka. Tuition includes breakfast and lunch and offsite dinner every day, transportation to and from the Brown Hotel, all instruction materials and an optional half-day additional lesson on the Sunday before the course starts.

From the website:

Our 5-Day Distiller Course provides a complete overview of the craft of distilling and the beverage alcohol industry through comprehensive technical training and business management education. It is held at our state-of-the-art educational facility, with our artisan-sized distillery designed as part of the classroom. It is an intensive, practical, hands-on learning experience that covers every facet of the craft and the industry, from grain selection to getting your product into the hands of consumers.

The Distilled Spirits Epicenter and Moonshine University are located at 801 S. 8th Street. Last fall we toured the Epicenter in advance of their first 5-day class. Check out the article here.