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Winter Park Distillery and Blending House FORWARD/SLASH set to open on April 1

Get ready to raise a glass to Central Florida’s latest distillery and blending house, FORWARD/SLASH which is set to throw open its doors to the public on Saturday, April 1.


Forward/Slash Premium Blended Whiskey has transformed a run down commercial warehouse building, located at 650 S. Capen Ave., into a stunning craft cocktail bar, tasting room, and bottle shop.


Forward/Slash features a covered patio, a craft cocktail bar and tasting room, a VIP/event room for classes and private events, a blending lab, and a massive warehouse space to store and mix new products.


The blending lab is where whiskies from select U.S. malt and grain distilleries will be combined to produce the company’s small-batch brand under the supervision of co-owners Tim Bradstreet and Michael Buffa.


Winter Park Distillery and Blending House FORWARD/SLASH

“We’re selecting aged American Whiskeys from all across the country from independent farmers and distillers and blending these incredible barrels here at our facility to create a truly unique product. We’re 100% transparent in who and where we source our whiskeys and other spirits from, giving the customer as much information as possible while simultaneously telling the story of the people who made the distillate. We tell their story through the art of blending. And blending is an artform, it is not easy, especially when it comes to working with different mash bills from different distilleries. You have to find that perfect balance and nuance in the blend so that each part can be highlighted and bring character to the final product. Like a musician playing an instrument in an orchestra.” said Bradstreet.


Winter Park Distillery and Blending House FORWARD/SLASH

The concept of blending might not be new but Buffa and Bradstreet aim to offer transparency through authenticity with each of their blends. Unlike many mass-marketed spirits, their labels will showcase a comprehensive ingredient list, aiming to tell the story of the distilleries and farmers behind them.


In addition to blending, they will also be distilling artisan liqueurs and bitters utilizing Florida agriculture, highlighting the bountiful offerings from local farmers. Their beverage program will roll out at open with a menu of intentionally crafted cocktails.


“We’re picking the best ingredients possible to make the best quality cocktails so we can create an experience for people – When you leave here, we want you to have an authentic cocktail bar experience and know what’s in your bottle. The products we are producing here are so delicious and so unique, we’re really excited to share them with everyone. ” said Buffa.


With the passing of recent Florida legislation in 2021, distilleries like FORWARD/SLASH can now sell spirits for direct consumption as a tasting or in a cocktail in their tasting rooms.


FORWARD/SLASH will have a grand opening at 4 pm on Saturday, April 1, with the celebrations lasting throughout the day until 11 pm.


Regular bar and tasting lounge hours will be Wednesday & Thursday from 4 pm to 10 pm and Friday and Saturday from 4 pm to 11 pm.


After opening, private tasting classes will begin as a means to offer a specialty guided experience into the world of distillation.


Winter Park Distillery and Blending House FORWARD/SLASH

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