Carmel natives share passion for spirits at 12.05
By Anna Skinner
The names of the 12.05 Distillery off of Virginia Avenue in Indianapolis and its restaurant, Repeal, originated from the date prohibition in America was repealed – Dec. 5, 1933. But these days, a lot more science, passion, and art goes into the spirits 12.05 creates than when spirits were made during prohibition.
12.05 makes four whiskeys, a gin and a vodka, and the distillery is currently working on a rhubarb liqueur to be released next month. Its first bourbon is currently aging and will be released in May 2017.
Other than all having a passion for spirits, Owner Teresa Hudson, Sales Manager Nolan Webster and Head Distiller Brad Colver all have one thing in common – a history in Carmel. Webster is a 2009 Carmel High School graduate, and Colver graduated from CHS in 2003.
“We all grew up in Carmel. Brad was friends with my older brothers their whole lives,” Webster said. “They all moved out to Colorado, and that’s where Brad learned how to distill. Long story short, my mom (Hudson) decided to open up the distillery once the laws let you do craft distilleries.”
Hudson’s husband, Bill, is one of the owners of Fountain Square Brewery.
“Distillation is more of an art (than brewing) … it’s a craft,” Hudson said. “You really do have to know when to make the cutoff, and a lot of people think they know, but when you get a vodka that’s harsh or a whiskey that burns all the way down, it’s because they didn’t make the cuts at the right time.”
The distillery began two years ago, and Repeal, the restaurant that is also owned by Hudson, started a year after to allow for the distillery to sell its own bottles of alcohol.
“No distillery can self-distribute its liquor,” Hudson said. “We are a different model than most. (The distillery and restaurant) are right next door (to each other), connected by a glass wall. We sell our spirits to the distributor and then the restaurant buys it back.”
Aside from selling 12.05’s spirits in the sister restaurant, the distillery has another aspect that’s interesting; Colver only has four fingers on his left hand, a result of a saw accident while completing the build out of the restaurant. The distillery’s first whiskey is even named after him as “Four Finger Rye Whiskey.”
“This was a family-and-friends affair … we did all the building ourselves and that included Brad cutting wood for doors,” Webster said.
12.05’s products are sold in multiple grocery stores, including Marsh and Kroger.
For more, visit 1205distillery.com.