St Augustine Distillery Company152 Votes Currently Open [Closes at 06:00 pm]
Soak up the antiquity of The Historic FP&L Ice Plant. Built as part of St. Augustine’s ï¬rst power and ice complex in 1907, it tells you about the triumphs and tragedies of the distillery’s founders. The members wanted to create Florida’s ï¬rst bourbon and other ï¬ne craft spirits and discovered that the best place to do this was at the Ice Plant. It is large and big enough to allow people to visit and learn what they were creating with locally grown sugar cane, wheat, corn, and citrus, to develop a ï¬ner quality spirit than just about any other place in the world.
The Ice Plant was the first of its kind to make commercial ice in Florida over 100 years ago. The world is indebted to Dr. John Gorrie for the invention of manufactured ice. While working on a cure for Yellow Fever, he dreamt of the idea of setting up a cooling system in the sickroom with ice filled basins suspended from the ceiling. His ice machine was ridiculed and he died financially ruined and publicly humiliated. Today the distillery is located inside of North Florida’s last remaining ice manufacturing plant. Philip McDaniel and Ryan Dettra, friends and community advocates, wanted to bring something distinct to St. Augustine, something that could take root and grow. Mike Diaz, the CFO became the voice behind this project. But the idea was too big and had to be reinforced with 28 more members. Three years later, this historic building became St. Augustine Distillery Company. Farmers were engaged to help grow crops which were unique to this region and to help make world-class spirits. In return, they were awarded with preservation of their farming heritage.
When remodelling started, the partners wanted to restore the sense of awe and get visitors stunned by the authentic turn-of-the-century manufacturing plant. They felt that the emotions of walking into an ancient ice factory should be reinstated. Walls were pulled down to reveal steel beams and a bridge crane along with beautiful windows. The search for period furniture was on in order to create a realistic picture. Some of the construction materials dates back to 1860, even the bricks were reclaimed bricks. The old lockers, worktables, were either found on site or located from other parts of the country and they all date back to 1870’s.
While building the distillery the partners got caught up with the 16th century and the importance of ice production. They discovered an era when distilling was about crafting quality spirits rather than corporate efficiency. This was a legacy they wanted to restore through the building and through their craft spirits.
St Augustine Distillery Company Travel Tips
- Monday through Saturday doors open at 10:00 am, and first tour is at 10:30 am.
- On Sundays they open at 11:00 am and first tour is at 11:30 am.
- Tours are then every half hour, at the top and middle of the hour, until 5:00 pm.
- The last tour begins at 5:00 pm, but the self-guided museum and retail store remain open until 6:00 pm.
- While the tour is geared towards adults, children are welcome though they won’t be able to taste spirits until they turn 21.
- There is free parking. Please be sure to enter parking lot via the north entrance.
- Tours are first-come, first-serve. Arrive 10-15 minutes prior to your desired tour time.
- Food is served at the Ice Plant Bar, which is located in the same building as the distillery. They serve lunch and dinner on weekdays and dinner on weekends.
- You can purchase something in their retail store without taking a tour.
Entrance Ticket Details For St Augustine Distillery Company
- Entry is free.
- Ice Plant: American
- Barnacle Bill’s Central Office: Seafood
- Crave Food Truck: Vegan, Healthy, Cafe, Organic
- Yard Bird cafe: American, Diner Cafe
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12.19% of people who visit St Augustine include St Augustine Distillery Company in their plan
95% of people start their St Augustine Distillery Company visit around 1 PM
People usually take around 1 Hr to see St Augustine Distillery Company
95% of people prefer to travel by car while visiting St Augustine Distillery Company
St Augustine Distillery Company Reviews & Ratings
What a gem of a place! This small distillery is listed as a top 5 most visited distillery in the United States. They promote local businesses, using local farms to make their nectar. They are known for their aged bourbon, but also make rum, vodka, and gin. They also make their own line of mixers, all from fresh items grown locally. They are very generous, with free sampling provided at the end of the free tour. A must visit on your next trip to Saint Augustine.
This is a free tour, and it is very well done. Short, to the point, and a great story about sustainability. Plenty of samples and no pressure, but you will find something you like and you will probably buy a bottle or two... I did! Do not be intimidated by the idea of leaving the old city. It is worth the walk, but Uber back. :)
I am so grateful that we made the stop for the tour this trip, as I had never been. Sure the free tastings were fantastic (I truly cannot stand gin, but it ended up being one of my favorite tastings because they apparently use magic in their gin). The part that truly made the tour for me, though was the story behind the distillery. This place is the epitome of community and the warm fuzzy feeling I had there started before the liquor flowed.
My wife and I reserved the museum and theater at the St Augustine Distillery for our wedding rehearsal and everything went better then we every imagined. Zoe and her staff were so attentive through the planning process all the way through packing up food at the end of the night. The decorations and flower arrangements Zoe got for the tables were perfect and we couldn't be happier with how the night went because of them. Plus the drinks from the distillery were DELICIOUS! We'll now always have a deep tie to the distillery and will be back any time we're in town.
Very highly recommend visiting the distillery. Lisa was our tour guide and she was fantastic!! We loved the whiskey, the tour, the facility, the staff AND the story! It being a FREE tour was just icing on the cake! The variety of gifts in the gift shop was terrific! It’s also very convenient that it’s a trolly stop, since you get plenty of taste testing😊