While High Wire Distillery will be a fully functional production facility, Ann Marshall and Scott Blackwell didn’t open a distilling facility in the heart of downtown Charleston just to sit inside all day and make mysterious brown boxes full of glass bottles appear in shipping crates. They chose Charleston for the curious customers. Having a background in all things people pleasing (see desserts, coffee, and ice cream), Scott and Ann decided to build a more interactive booze-operation at High Wire.
Ann, the marketing mastermind behind the new distillery, refers to Scott as a “serial entrepreneur”. High Wire is his sixth business venture; priors include a pie company, a Ben & Jerry’s Distribution Center, Immaculate Consumption (a café), and Little River Coffee Roasters, all in upstate South Carolina. Scott’s certificate in baking, from the Culinary Institute of America, also comes in handy when creating balanced botanical flavor profiles and dealing with the yeast involved in distilling.
Included in the floor plan of High Wire is an “Apothecary Area” where visitors can see, and smell the different vegta-berry-protein-elixirs that go into and come out of the creation of a single batch of liquor. There will be a tasting room for the final product, and “gift shop” for the compulsive and discerning visitor.
Currently, these folks are in the process of taste testing with Dave Pickerell, a consultant and 17-year veteran of Makers Mark, alongside their Head Distiller, Nick Dowling, formerly of The MacIntosh.
Their 500-gallon German copper still has been installed since late June and opening date is set for September 12th. Tours, with a tasting ($8), will run every hour, Thursday thru Saturday from 1-5pm.
High Wire Distilling will be searching out local produce, grains and even coopers wherever possible. The distillery will be turning out gin, rum, whiskey, vodka and other interesting, unique products.
High Wire is located in the same lot as the acclaimed sandwich shop Butcher & Bee, on Upper King Street. 652 King Street, Charleston, SC 29403.