Reading getting its own distillery downtown

Reading getting its own distillery...

READING, Pa. - Folks are in good spirits over a new business in Reading.

"A lot of people are excited," said Chris Flowers, the owner of Reading Distilling Guild, "They are looking forward to it."

"This is a great sign," said Craig Poole, the general manager of the DoubleTree Hotel on Penn Street. "This is like the rainbow coming in."

"We are the first in Berks County and Reading since prohibition," Flowers said.

The company plans on making different varieties of rum and other spirits. Fermenting molasses in 55-gallon containers is the first step in making rum.

"For us, it takes about nine or 10 days, and once that's done, it goes into the still, and that takes about a day," Flowers said.

The process from start to finish takes just under two weeks to make about 500 cases.

Flowers said the handmade craft spirits will be made and marketed in Reading and distributed right in the city.

"Sometime in August you'll be able to enjoy it at one of your local restaurants or bars around town," Flowers said.

Places like the DoubleTree Hotel plan on using everything from the distillery. Poole said it's a win-win for the city.

"His success is a success for the whole entire community," Poole said.

Flowers said he is just waiting on final approval from the state this week before starting production. Reading Distilling Guild has received federal approval already to begin making spirits.

Production is expected to start in late-June.

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