Behind the Still: Kelly Bodnar’s Dive into Distilling

Taking a tour with Asbury Park Distilling Co.'s Head Distiller

by Mike Ham

In the dimly lit confines of Asbury Park Distillery Company, amidst the gentle hum of machinery and the heady aroma of fermenting grains, I found myself immersed in a world where science meets artistry. Guided by the expertise of Kelly Bodnar, the distillery’s head artisan, I embarked on a captivating journey into the heart of craft distillation. As we navigated the labyrinthine corridors of the production space, Bodnar’s passion for her craft illuminated every step, revealing secrets and insights that have been distilled through years of dedication and expertise.

Photo via Asbury Park Distilling Co.

Bodnar’s journey into the realm of distillation is a tale of passion and perseverance. From her initial fascination with spirits to her proactive pursuit of a role at the distillery, Bodnar’s story is one of unwavering determination and dedication. As she shared anecdotes from her hands-on learning experience, it became clear that her journey was driven by a deep-seated passion for the art of distillation.

One of the highlights of our conversation was our discussion on the intricacies of the custom-made still used at Asbury Park Distillery Company. Bodnar’s expertise shone as she delved into the innovative design of the still, explaining its versatility in producing a diverse range of spirits, including vodka, gin, and whiskey. Her insights into the distillation process and the crucial role of barrel selection in flavor development were both enlightening and inspiring.

Photo via Asbury Park Distilling Co.

Throughout our dialogue, Bodnar’s fervor for her craft was palpable. Her meticulous attention to detail and commitment to quality underscored her unwavering dedication to the art of distillation. From the careful selection of ingredients to the precise timing of distillation, Bodnar’s passion for crafting exceptional spirits was evident at every turn.

Asbury Park Distillery Company stands as a testament to innovation and tradition in the world of craft distillation. Under Bodnar’s guidance, the distillery continues to push boundaries and redefine the art of spirit-making. Whether you’re a seasoned enthusiast or simply curious about the distilling process, a visit to Asbury Park Distillery Company promises an immersive and enlightening experience, where the magic of craft distillation comes to life before your eyes.

About the Author/s

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Mike Ham is the voice behind the popular podcast, "Greetings From the Garden State". Traveling up and down New Jersey, Mike brings his listeners the stories of the people and places shaping the Garden State. Not only is he a Jersey diehard, he is also a respected member of the podcast community and has spoken at several podcasting conferences. As he continues to amplify the voices of New Jersey, Mike Ham remains a passionate advocate for the diverse narratives woven into the fabric of the Garden State.

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