AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) - Augusta will soon have it's first distillery downtown on 8th and Reynolds Streets and NewsChannel 6 got a tour of the new spot on Monday.
For the owners of Carolina Moon Distillery in Edgefield, Distilling happened accidentally. Now, they have a second loation in downtown Augusta called Second City centered around Augusta Georgia history.
"Growing up across the river in a rural setting, we came to Augusta for everything so it was kind of our second city," says co-owner David Long. "And when you read up on the history of augusta, it was once nicknamed the second city of Georgia because it was at one time considered the second capital of Georgia."
In their Augusta location they plan to start with whiskey, vodka, rum, bourbon and gin. Different from their Edgefiled distillery, you will be able to drink a cocktail at the bar made with the spirits distilled right there in the same building. Afterwards, if you like what you tasted, you can buy a bottle in their retail section.
"People want something that's unique." Long says. "That's part of it-- hey, this is made in my home town. I know these guys. You can go there and see how it's done, that kind of thing."
The building they renovated is tucked down by the Riverwalk. Long says it has been vacant for years.
"There's a lot of talk of a lot of projects. There's a lot of people interested in downtown," Long says.
There is interest a stone's throw away on Reynolds. There are new owners for the building that used to be Cotton Patch. They are opening a new southern style restaurant called Noble Jones that is expected to be serving food by May.
While the guys at Second City wrap up the final touches on the building, visitors explore the Riverwalk behind them.
"They wanted to see some of the history of the city," says Rex Knapp who brought out of town friends from Evans to downtown Augusta. "It's nice to see the city, some of the buildings being restored," he says.
Paro Singletary moved to Augusta from Charleston to get a cyber security degree. He walks the Riverwalk on his lunch break in between classes at the cyber center.
"I feel like augusta is a gold mine," Singletary says. "There is a lot of opportunity here, but it's almost like people have to wake it up so now we're in that awakening process."
The Convention and Visitor's Bureau's Destination Blueprint plan for downtown Augusta shines an even brighter spotlight on 8th Street's potential. Long is excited for the future and feels their distillery arrived at the perfect time.
"Downtown is definitely about to surge," Long says.
They have had a list of setbacks, which have affected their opening date, but they are in the home stretch. Long and his partners are waiting on one final license and they will open the doors to Second City as soon as they get it.
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