TAMPA, Fla.—Dark Door Spirits is a distillery that offers it all—cocktail classes, bottle your own alcohol experiences, a tasting room and local hand-crafted spirits.
The distillery got its start in 2015 and specializes in unique whiskeys, gins, vodkas and most recently rums. They follow a “grain-to-glass" distilling model, getting most of its grain from Florida sources like University of Florida’s agriculture program.
“At Dark Door Spirits, we’re probably known for unique and creative spirits,” said Matt Allen, CEO and co-founder of the distillery. “We love to do fun things, basically because we can.”
Dark Door Spirits is popular for distilling beer into whiskey—its first item to hit the market was The Spirit of IPA. Since then, the distillery has worked closely with local breweries like Green Bench Brewing Company, Motorworks Brewing and Cigar City to produce quality whiskeys.
“No one’s doing it nearly as good as we are, I can tell you that,” said Allen, regarding beer distilling in Tampa Bay. “In Germany, it would actually be called ‘beer schnapps’...it takes some finesse and some...fine tuning to do it right.”
The distillery is open seven days a week and offers different hospitality-driven classes and experiences.
Tastings and tours are offered everyday usually starting in the afternoons during the week and earlier on the weekends. Tours are $15 for one hour and include a walkthrough of the spirit making process and a look at the equipment, followed by some samples of the spirits. Guests are welcome to hang around for a cocktail and listen to some music after the tour.
Cocktail classes are offered a couple of times each month. Guests will learn to make three cocktails while they snack on a charcuterie box. The class is $50 for one and a half hours and includes a tour of the distillery.
Dark Door Spirits also offers a Bottle-Your-Own-Whiskey experience. Over the course of 2 hours, guests will sample a variety of bourbons and rye whiskeys out of the barrel, then combine 2 or more types of whiskey to create your own custom blend in the form of a 1-liter bottle to take home. This experience is $150 and includes a tour of the distillery.
“Eat lunch before you come do this one, for sure,” said Allen.
Not a fan of whiskey? The distillery offers a similar experience with gin, where guests can choose from an array of gins infused with botanicals and flavor profiles to create a custom bottle.
To book a tour or class, click here.
Dark Door Spirits is located at 6608 Anderson Road, across the way from FedEx. You can find a list of available award-winning spirits and where to purchase them on their website.