Distillery makes sanitizer

The Hardware Distillery Co. helps meet desperate demand for hand sanitizer

It’s anything but typical for a distillery known for tasty spirits to start making something unpalatable; yet, that is exactly what The Hardware Distillery Co. in Hoodsport is doing. Between batches of their hand-crafted distilled recipes, they are now mixing up high-alcohol sanitizing solutions. The Coronavirus has caused a supply shortage of sanitizing products and alcoholic beverage makers throughout the country are offering to fill the void by retooling to produce it in bulk. The Hardware Distillery is geared up to begin supplying Mason County.

Jan Morris, owner of The Hardware Distillery received a notice from the Distillers Guild last week requesting a commitment to start making sanitizer as part of a coordinated industry effort to replenish supplies for healthcare providers. Jan and her team quickly adapted and followed a recipe turning stale, local apple cider into an 70% alcohol solution for hands. This resulted in an added bonus of a pleasant odor. The first batch was ready this past weekend and was earmarked for emergency responders at the Hoodsport and Lake Cushman fire departments as well as area homeless charities. A posting on the company’s Facebook page drew a line of customers on Saturday that depleted the rest.“We are trying to be a resource to make Hoodsport healthy,” says Jan. “Lots of requests are flowing in and we are working out effective ways to distribute it for all residents within Mason County.” Jan explains the biggest challenge is a limited capacity to produce in bulk. As a small outfit, there is nothing automated about their distilling process. Each step is done by hand with equipment that only allows up to a volume of 10 liters per batch. Due to regulations, the sanitizing product will not be sold at a profit but rather at a nominal cost to recoup expenses. For now, the IGA Hood Canal Grocery in Hoodsport will carry two ounce mini bottles. The Hardware Distillery is closing its retail location for the month, so this Thursday, April 2, is the last day that customers can bring a personal container up to 16 ounces to be filled. The cost is 25 cents per ounce. Visit between the hours of 12:00-5:00p and abide by the six foot social distancing rule if there is a line. Bottles of signature Bee’s Knees, whiskey, gins, aquavit, vodka, and liqueurs are for sale too. Sanitizer is free with each full-size spirit purchase. It is also available for purchase at $0.25 per ounce. Call Jan at (206) 300-0877 for more information.

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