2011 American Distilling Institute Conference Moves to Portland

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Rouge Founder Jack Joyce and ADI Founder Bill Owens Discuss ADI 2011
Rogue Founder Jack Joyce and ADI Founder Bill Owens discuss ADI 2011

The American Distilling Institute announced that it’s bringing its annual ADI Conference and Vending Expo to Portland, Oregon, April 4-8th, 2011. The event will be held at McMenamins Edgefield Distillery with sponsorship from Rogue.

In a press conference held at the Green Dragon (one of Rogue’s brew/distill pubs), Jack Joyce, founder of Rogue, talked about the vision of Oregon becoming a fermentation capital of the US with craft beer, wine and spirit making. At the heart of this drive is the notion that legalizing home distillation is a key to the future of the craft distilling industry, and that he felt Oregon could be a place where such legislation could take place.

Bill Owens, the founder of the American Distilling Institute, and co-author of The Art of Distilling Whiskey and Other Spirits: An Enthusiast’s Guide to the Artisan Distilling of Potent Potables
, spoke about the growth in micro-distilling in the US (defined as distillers who produce 65,000 proof gallons ore less per year). In 1993, Owens visited 60 US micro-distillers when starting the ADI; in 2010, that number has grown to over 200.

Owen’s remarked on the explosive growth of micro-distillers in Portland, including Distillery Row, a growing collection of craft micro-distillers making their mark nationally as one reason for moving theĀ conferenceĀ from Kentucky to Oregon.

Beyond Oregon, Owen’s talked about large growth in craft distilling of whiskey in Texas and the south, including Georgia and the Carolinas, with an increasing number of illegal moonshine operations getting their federal licenses and becoming legitimate micro-distillers.

Bill Owens Serves Barrel Proof Whiskey
Bill Owens serves samples of barrel-proof whiskey

The 2011 American Distilling Institute Conference and Expo will span a week of activities in Portland including 6 restaurant spirit paring dinners, a bus tour of local distilleries and Distillery Row, a trade show with over 250 distilling-related vendors, a pitch and putt invitational on Edgefield’s golf range, and a “meet the spirit maker” evening which will be open to the public. The event is expected to draw 300-400 people from across the country including many notable micro-distillers. The theme of the 2011 conference is “Rum & Brandy – Sugar & fruit”

For more information visit the American Distilling Institute.