Meet Freeland Spirits, Portland’s Newest Woman-Owned Distillery

When Freeland Spirits, Portland’s soon-to-be newest distillery launched its Indiegogo campaign in early November, the campaign reached $19,000 of its $25,000 goal in one day. There are just six days left of the campaign for the distillery set to open its doors in May of 2018.

I stopped in recently to see the spot on NW Vaughn Street. Although the space isn’t operational yet, the woman-owned distillery has been distilling gin at nearby Martin Ryan Distilling (Aria gin), with whiskey up next in its portfolio. Here’s more on the distillery by Jill Kuehler, Molly Troupe, and Cory Carman (Carman Ranch will grow grain for Freeland whiskey).

 

Fewer than 1% of distilleries in the U.S. are owned by women. Tell us about some of the ways you are celebrating the women of the craft.

First, we are celebrating that we are women owned and run, from the gals growing the grain to those distilling the spirits. Second, we plan on partnering with women-owned businesses, like making gin candles, whiskey chocolates, whiskey barrel beer, etc. We will also support nonprofits that focus on women empowerment, like our partnership with Oregon Tradeswomen to do the distillery demo work. Third, we will run training seminars for women interested in furthering their distilling education.

Tell us a little bit about what led you both into the world of distilling.

For Molly, it was a love of Chemistry. While earning her undergraduate degree in Chemistry with an emphasis in Forensics, she discovered a passion for creating, and after a boozy night, decided that spirits would be a fulfilling career path. She began searching Master’s programs and found one in Scotland for Brewing and Distilling. She has been in the industry ever since.

For Jill, it was walking into a distillery five years ago. The smells of the spirits, the barrels, the grain, and meeting the people of the craft who cared so deeply about their creation. There was no going back.

Your first spirit, Freeland Spirits Gin is due out February 14th. Tell us a bit about your gin!

We have a limited release gin that is available as of December 1st.

Our gin is unlike any other gin due to its creative process. Both traditional and vacuum distilling are used to create a layered flavor profile. Each of the nineteen botanicals hits you in soft waves that will transport you into Meemaw’s garden, full of cucumbers and herbs.

 

Whiskey is up next in your portfolio. Tell us a bit about the whiskey and when we can expect to see it in the tasting room.

We will at first focus on Bourbon and Rye Whiskies and eventually will broaden our portfolio to include Single Malt and alternative grain whiskies. We will use a variety of techniques to produce some outstanding whiskies.

How are things going with the distillery opening? When can we come hang out?

We are days away from having our building permit in hand. We hope to be open in May 2018. Our opening will be the party of the century 🙂