No Whiskey Shortage In Omaha: Local Distillery Barrels First Batch Since Prohibition

By: Melina Matthes

OMAHA (kptm) - There is a growing national shortage of whiskey, but one Omaha man is trying to make sure there's a good supply here.

An Old Market distillery is celebrating. Monday, the owner poured the first glass of distilled whiskey.

It's the first time since prohibition anyone in the metro has dabbled in the whiskey game in almost 100 years.

The oak barrel with the first batch of local whiskey will soon be bottled into 250 bottles of Borgata single malt whiskey.

It's the first whiskey distilled in Omaha since the prohibition. "It'll be a single malt white whiskey, we call it fancy moonshine."

Zac Triemert's love for whiskey began in college. He was so passionate about it he decided to make a career of it.

When the whiskey drought started, he was determined to open the first distillery inside the city limits of Omaha. "It's a good time to be in the whiskey business. I've been doing this for a long time and I love it and so I can't think of a better time to be restartingto be doing it over again and making some fantastic whiskey."

But it took him a long time to get licensed. He said last year's federal government shut down really slowed the process down.

Finally, he opened Borgata Brewery and Distillery in December. A month ago they started brewing beer and as of this week they are distilling. "We're fully operational and we're excited to share all of the new things that we're brewing and distilling with the people in Omaha."

And because he learned how to distill whiskey in Scotland, he said the first batch that will be available to the public will taste similar to how single malt whiskey is in that country. He's calling it Borgata White Whiskey. "We're doing a fairly light whiskey. It's going to have some light fruit notes, really easy to drink, a little floral, it's going to be a nice drinking whiskey."

If you want to get your hands on Omaha's only single malt whiskey, you can do so as early as next week.

However, if you want to buy a bottle you'll have to wait about four to six weeks.

And, some of the whiskey that's being made now will be put in barrels and won't be sold for a couple of years.

The business plan is to eventually also distill its own brands of gin and vodka.

If whiskey isn't your drink of choice, Borgata also brews four different beers; a pilsner, pale ale, German wheat beer and a stout.

Borgata Brewery and Distillery is located in the Old Market near 11th and Jackson.

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