Illegal production halted at Phoenix Hill distillery - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Illegal production halted at Phoenix Hill distillery

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ABC officials went inside and found more than 1,000 gallons of alcohol in stills and barrels. ABC officials went inside and found more than 1,000 gallons of alcohol in stills and barrels.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A new Phoenix Hill Distillery has been shut down for illegal production, according to the local Alcoholic Beverage Control.

Derby City Spirits, which took the spot of the old Flip Flop Jack's building, underwent a major transformation from a former bar into a distillery earlier this year. 

On Thursday, production at the facility came to a halt. ABC officials went inside and found more than 1,000 gallons of alcohol in stills and barrels. But the business doesn't have a city or state license for production, according to ABC.

It was originally going to be a moonshine distillery, but the company's vision expanded to include other products, like vodka, rum, and gin.

"Our distributor said you guys have got to do more than that. We want a full line, so we said, 'you know what, why not? Let's do it.' Let's get a full line of everything and make everybody happy, because not everybody likes moonshine,” Harrison Hyden, the Owner and Master Distiller, said in March of 2015.

“I feel like once it's done it's going to be a tourist attraction, just like many of the other museums and distilleries that are in this area,” said Jay Blevins, the owner, in May of 2014.

City officials said the business has a building permit and can continue with their construction work, but the business doesn't have an electrical permit or a certificate of occupancy. That's means the company isn't allowed to run any business inside the building. The company has to at least obtain a certificate of occupancy to begin production. 

Robert Kirchdorfer, Louisville's Alcoholic Beverage Control Administrator, issued the following statement:

"Local and state ABC officials along with the Louisville Metro Fire Department have dismantled the stills that were in operation at Derby City Spirits due to lack of proper permits and licensing. Derby City Spirits has previously been notified by local and state ABC officials to cease operations until the proper permits and licenses are obtained. Safety is a top concern, the company will need to show they are in compliance with all laws before opening and distilling spirits."

We reached out to the owners of Derby City Spirits, but have not heard back from the company's attorneys. 

Previous: Phoenix Hill distillery to open soon with new concept

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