St. Augustine Distillery Company logo.

St. Augustine Distillery

  • USA, Florida
  • 2023 USA Today Recognition, 2022 Barleycorn Awards, Los Angeles International Spirits Competition
Phone Number
  • +19048254962
  • 112 Riberia St, St. Augustine, FL 32084, United States

Exterior of St. Augustine Distillery building with signs.

History of St. Augustine Distillery


Founding and Founders

The St. Augustine Distillery, established in 2013, was the brainchild of Philip McDaniel and Michael Diaz. Their goal was to create exceptional spirits that truly reflected the essence of Florida’s agriculture. The distillery opened in 2014, marking the first legal production of spirits in northeast Florida since Prohibition. It is housed in a historic ice manufacturing plant, originally built in 1917, which has been meticulously restored​​​​​​.

Community and Sustainability

St. Augustine Distillery prides itself on its sustainability efforts and strong community ties. They source ingredients from local and regional farmers and return spent grains to local farms. This sustainable cycle not only supports local agriculture but also contributes to the community’s well-being.

Spirit Offerings

The distillery’s product line showcases the rich agricultural heritage of Florida. The offerings include a variety of spirits:

Florida Straight Bourbon: This bourbon, the foundation of their whiskey line, is noted for its wheated mash bill and signature dark chocolate and cacao notes. It is aged for a minimum of three years and is evolving towards a four-year-old release.

Port Finished Bourbon: Finished in port wine barrels from a neighboring winery, this bourbon is renowned for its dark chocolate-covered raspberry and brandied cherry notes.

The Saint Bourbon: A cask strength bourbon finished in re-charred barrels, known for its mulled wine and zesty citrus flavors.

Pot Distilled Rum, New World Gin, and Florida Cane Vodka are other notable products, each crafted with a focus on local ingredients and traditional methods​​.

Awards Won by St. Augustine Distillery

USA Today Recognition: In 2023, USA Today readers voted St. Augustine Distillery as the best craft distillery tour in the country.

Barleycorn Awards: In 2022, they were named “Company of the Year” at the Barleycorn Awards.

Los Angeles International Spirits Competition: Their spirits earned gold medals in the 2016 competition.

San Francisco World Spirits Competition: Another notable achievement in 2016, where they again secured gold medals.

Southern Living Food Awards: Their gin was titled “Best Gin of the South” in 2016.

American Craft Spirits Association Competition: They received accolades in the 2015 competition.

Best Craft Gin Distillery: USA Today named them the “Best Craft Gin Distillery” in the U.S. in September 2016.

SIP Awards: In 2017, their Florida Double Cask Bourbon won a gold medal, while their Port Finished Bourbon received a “Best of Class” platinum medal at the SIP Awards.

St. Augustine Distillery Tour Information and Experience

The St. Augustine Distillery offers an immersive tour experience that combines history, craftsmanship, and sensory delight, making it an essential visit for anyone interested in the world of spirits. Here’s a more detailed look at what makes this tour so special:

Immersive Historical Experience

Unique Venue: Housed in an authentically restored ice plant from 1917, the distillery provides a rare glimpse into the past. The historic building bridges a bygone era with modern distillation techniques, offering a unique atmosphere that’s both nostalgic and educational.

Preserving Heritage: The tour underscores the cultural significance of the ice plant, highlighting its role in St. Augustine’s history and the broader context of Florida’s industrial past.

In-Depth Educational Insight

Detailed Distilling Process: Visitors are given a comprehensive overview of the distillation process, from the selection of ingredients to the final product. This part of the tour is particularly enlightening for those interested in the technical and artistic aspects of spirit production.

Interactive Displays: Engaging exhibits throughout the tour provide insight into the evolution of spirit distilling in Florida, enhancing understanding through visual and interactive elements.

Varied Tour Experiences

Flexibility with Self-Guided Tours: For those who prefer exploring at their own pace, the self-guided tour is ideal. It allows visitors to linger over displays and absorb information without the constraints of a structured group tour.

Insightful Guided Tours: The guided tour adds a personal touch, with knowledgeable guides sharing anecdotes and answering questions, making it a more intimate and informative experience.

Specialty Programs: For a unique experience, the Perfect Pair Tasting Experiences offer an opportunity to pair the distillery’s spirits with unexpected food items, enhancing the understanding of flavor profiles and combinations.

Hands-On Experiences

Bottling Your Own Spirit: The Fill-Your-Own Bottling Experience is a hands-on activity where visitors can participate in the bottling process, providing a memorable take-home souvenir of the visit.

Bourbon Steward Program: For enthusiasts looking to deepen their knowledge, the Certified Bourbon Steward program is an intensive course that offers a deeper dive into the world of bourbon.

Award-Winning Spirits and Retail Opportunity

Tasting Award-Winning Spirits: Visitors have the chance to taste a range of award-winning spirits, including bourbons, rums, gins, and vodkas, all crafted with a commitment to quality and local sourcing.

Retail Shop: The on-site retail shop offers a selection of spirits and merchandise, perfect for taking a piece of the St. Augustine Distillery experience home.

Practical Information for Visitors

Accessibility and Opening Hours: The distillery is open daily from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm, making it convenient for visitors to plan their trip.

Location and Contact: Located at 112 Riberia Street, St. Augustine, FL 32084, the distillery is easily accessible. For more information or specific inquiries, visitors can contact the distillery at (904) 825-4962 or explore their website.

Flask & Barrel Review of St. Augustine Distillery

As a seasoned whiskey collector who’s been on numerous distillery tours, I must say my visit to St. Augustine Distillery was an experience that stood out, meriting a solid 4.7 out of 5 in my book. Here’s why:

First off, the setting of the distillery in a historic ice plant adds a unique charm to the whole experience. It’s not every day you get to see a piece of history so beautifully repurposed. Walking through the doors, I was immediately struck by the blend of the old and the new, where traditional distilling methods meet modern innovation.

The tour itself was both informative and engaging. As someone who’s seen a fair share of distilleries, I appreciated the depth of detail provided about their distilling process and the history behind their craft. It’s evident that they don’t just make spirits here; they’re passionate about their craft and eager to share their knowledge.

Now, let’s talk about the main attraction – the whiskey. Sampling their range, including the Florida Straight Bourbon, was a highlight for me. Each spirit showcased a distinctive character, a testament to their commitment to quality and local sourcing. As a collector, I found their flavors unique enough to stand out in my extensive collection.

The staff also deserves a mention. They were not just knowledgeable, but also genuinely enthusiastic about their products and the distillery’s history. It’s always a pleasure to interact with people who are not just doing a job but are truly passionate about what they’re presenting.

What To Do Nearby St. Augustine Distillery

Haunted Tour: Dive into the eerie side of St. Augustine with a haunted ghost tour. This activity is especially engaging during the fall or Halloween season and is ideal for those interested in the paranormal.

St. Augustine Lighthouse: Visit Florida’s oldest lighthouse for breathtaking views and learn about its over 500 years of history. The lighthouse stands at 167 feet and offers a museum and a family-friendly playground.

Castillo de San Marcos National Monument: Explore this 17th-century limestone fortification built by the Spanish. It’s a significant historical site where you can learn about the soldiers’ lives and witness cannon demonstrations.

Lightner Museum: An art lover’s paradise housed in the former Alcazar Hotel, the Lightner Museum showcases a vast collection of 19th-century art, including paintings, furniture, and stained glass.

Castle Otttis: This unique structure, built as a tribute to Jesus Christ, offers a spiritually enriching experience with its design inspired by Irish castles from the 20th century.

Anastasia State Park: A perfect spot for outdoor enthusiasts, this state park offers pristine beaches, wildlife watching, and activities like canoeing and kayaking. It’s also home to historic coquina quarries.

San Sebastian Winery: For wine aficionados, this winery offers complimentary tours and tastings. It’s located in one of Henry Flagler’s historic railroad buildings.

Fort Matanzas National Monument: This fort, completed in 1742, played a crucial role in protecting St. Augustine. Accessible by a short ferry ride, it offers a glimpse into the region’s colonial past.

St. Augustine Pirate & Treasure Museum: A fantastic destination for families, this museum offers interactive experiences with a replica ship, pirate tour guides, and a treasure hunt.

St. Augustine Alligator Farm and Zoological Park: Home to a wide variety of crocodile species and other wildlife, this park is one of Florida’s oldest attractions and a must-visit for animal lovers.

Frequently Asked Questions

What restaurants are near St. Augustine Distillery?

Harry’s Seafood, Bar & Grille: It has a rating of 4.6 stars on Google Maps. For reservations, you can reach out to them on their phone at +19048247765. Their address is 46 Avenida Menendez, St. Augustine, FL 32084, United States.

Aunt Kate’s: It has a rating of 4.4 stars on Google Maps. For reservations, you can reach out to them on their phone at +19048291105. Their address is 612 Euclid Ave, St. Augustine, FL 32084, United States.

Columbia Restaurant: It has a rating of 4.4 stars on Google Maps. For reservations, you can reach out to them on their phone at +19048243341. Their address is 98 St George St, St. Augustine, FL 32084, United States.

What hotels are near St. Augustine Distillery?

Hilton St. Augustine Historic Bayfront: It has a rating of 4.5 stars on Google Maps. For reservations, you can reach out to them on their phone at +19048292277. Their address is 32 Avenida Menendez, St. Augustine, FL 32084, United States.

Homewood Suites by Hilton St Augustine San Sebastian: It has a rating of 4.0 stars on Google Maps. For reservations, you can reach out to them on their phone at +19045752500. Their address is 10 Prawn St, St. Augustine, FL 32084, United States.

Hyatt Place St. Augustine / Vilano Beach: It has a rating of 4.3 stars on Google Maps. For reservations, you can reach out to them on their phone at +19042951111. Their address is 117 Vilano Rd, St. Augustine, FL 32084, United States.