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Business planning leads to first New Jersey distillery in years

The New Jersey Artisan Distilling has opened in an unassuming warehouse in Fairfield. Since its opening, the distillery has garnered a lot of attention as the first company to obtain a distillery license since the end of Prohibition in 1933. After ambitious business planning, the company applied for and finally obtained the license on Feb. 7.

Once the initial application was filed, the company's founders spent months providing additional information to the New Jersey Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control and paid $12,500 for the license fees. When the company's founders first looked into obtaining a distillery license and found that no one in the state had one, they questioned whether they should make the attempt themselves. The fact that the license costs so much and the application process is grueling had simply turned people off in the past and no one had even tried to get the license.

Even though the business is still fairly new, they are already fielding multiple calls from restaurants and distributors. The company currently only makes rum, but would like to branch out into making vodka, bourbon, whiskey and gin. The company says that it makes its products for a "mature crowd" that drinks for the pleasure of it.

This young New Jersey company took a big gamble when they not only opening the distillery in today's economy, but also in taking the step to obtain the expensive and seemingly elusive distillery license. However, with careful business planning their diligence and patience has paid off. Taking a risk and doing something that offers haven't attempted may be a big gamble, but the rewards may just be worth it.

Source:, "First N.J. distillery to open since Prohibition gets early taste of sweet success," Eunice Lee, March 31, 2013

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