By creating a unique range of spirits, Jesse Fanning, distiller and CEO of Henebery Whiskey in Vista, can offer up options that haven’t always been available to customers from more traditional spirits companies.
First launched in 1851 in Peoria, Ill., Henebery Whiskey was recently resurrected by distant relatives who got their hands on founder Matthew Henebery’s brand assets and trademarks that had been passed down from generation to generation.
Now CEO, founder and distiller Jesse Fanning (whose great, great, great grandfather in-law was Henebery) has gone all in on a distillery and tasting room in North County.
“Vista just called our name,” he said. “And now we’re collaborating with a lot of North County breweries and just trying to get our name on the map up in North County.”
The idea of the new distillery started about five years ago, with the full facility in Vista opening about a year and a half ago. Henebery is located in an area of town affectionately known as “Scotland,” which is because of its location off Scott Street and due to the whiskey distillery also being in close proximity to BattleMage Brewing Company.
Fanning sat down to record an episode of Kiss My Glass, and discussed the following:
- Going all in
- Adding new spirits to the portfolio
- Membership program
- Synergy with nearby brewery
- Barrel aging and collaborations
- Cocktail competition to raise money for the Balboa Conservancy
- What does the consumer deserve to have?
- Cutwater Spirits helps open up markets for San Diego companies
- “When I see something I love, I want to support it.”
- With growth comes change, and sometimes that can be confusing to consumers
- Relaunching Henebery after original incarnation in 1851
- Team of three runs distillery, plus tasting room team
- Whiskey will always be the backbone of the company
- Bringing Henebery to market
- Bringing bartenders into the distillery for special series
Kiss My Glass is a collaboration between PACIFIC and Facebook group Eating and Drinking in San Diego. The podcast is hosted on the U-T Podcast Network.
Listen and subscribe to Kiss My Glass and sister podcast Dish It Up wherever you listen to podcasts, including iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher and Soundcloud.
2870 Scott St., Vista
@heneberywhiskey (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter)