Williamson Source 5 Questions

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Heath Clark

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Heath grew up on a small farm near Winchester, TN, and earned a B.A. in History and J.D. from the University of Tennessee. In addition to distilling craft Tennessee spirits, Heath is a practicing attorney that provides healthcare regulatory and transactional advice to his clients. Heath lives in southern Williamson County with his wife Becky and their two children Maddie and Tucker.

1

Tell me about H Clark Distillery?
H Clark Distillery is the result of persistently chasing a dream. I’ve long been fascinated with the craft of distilling and several years ago was challenged by a friend to go and make it a reality. Getting here has been quite an adventure. From working on the successful legislation several years ago, having early plans fail, and then spending a couple of years renovating the old granary in Thompson’s Station, I’m making sure I enjoy the moment in getting our spirits into the market. We craft four spirits using our handmade copper pot still in Thompsons Station. We’ve been distilling and barreling our Tennessee Bourbon and Tennessee Rye whiskey since last fall and distilling our Tennessee Dry Gin and New Whiskey this spring. We distill all of our spirits in Thompsons Station and don’t outsource or private label. So every spirit we sell is one we crafted in Thompsons Station. Our Tennessee Dry Gin and New Whiskey are available, and our Tennessee Bourbon and Tennessee Rye are aging and will be available when they are ready.

2

What do you find most challenging about running your own business?
I’ve run my own law practice for five years and now the distillery for about 9 months. The biggest challenge is that a small business owner is always the one who has to provide the energy and direction for the business and is ultimately responsible for the outcomes. And there is only so much you can do. So figuring out how and when to delegate duties and how to find the right folks to help execute the vision is always hard. And having two businesses that require intense attention just amplifies that dynamic. As crazy and hard as it is, I wouldn’t do it any other way.

3

What are your future plans for H Clark Distillery?
The short term plans are to keep introducing our Tennessee Dry Gin and New Whiskey to the folks in Williamson County and beyond. And keep barreling bourbon and rye and get better at bottling and anticipating supply needs. We sold out of our New Whisky before I could get grain in to make more and a few folks left the distillery disappointed last weekend since it wasn’t available to buy. We’ll have more this week. The long term plans are really to keep working to perfect this craft. I’m betting that there is a market for great hand-crafted spirits, and I intend to continue to craft spirits that the people of Williamson County can enjoy (responsibly) and be proud of.

4

Where can I find H Clark Distillery products?
You can currently find us at the Distillery and at Circa in Thompsons Station, as well as Cork & Cow, Brinkman’s, Red Dog, and Elixer Wine and Spirits. We are easing into the retail space at a pace we can maintain as we continue to get better at bottling our spirits. We are distributed by Harvest Beverage in Franklin, so call Ralph Drury, Ashley Roberts or Ondrea Harrison at Harvest if you are a retailer interested in our spirits. You can call us at the distillery as well.

5

Favorite weekend activities?
I really enjoy watching my kids play soccer or swim or just play out in the yard. And I like to spend the early hours of Saturday and Sunday out on my bicycle enjoying this beautiful county we live in.

H Clark Distillery is located at 1557 Thompson’s Station Road West,  Thompson’s Station, TN 37179.  For more information please call 615.478.2191 or visit their website at http://hclarkdistillery.com/

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