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Jun 7, 2016 9:30 AM ET

Archived: CLEVELAND WHISKEY – Age whiskey in a day, not years: We aim to out-compete traditional distilleries, reinvigorate the craft spirit movement, and become the world’s largest producer of “just in time” whiskey

iCrowdNewswire - Jun 7, 2016




Age whiskey in a day, not years.

Traditional whiskey takes 6-12 years to mature in oak barrels. We replicate that aging process in one day by rapidly accelerating the pressure and temperature cycles that draw flavor out of wood. Our technology also can use an array of woods never before possible – like black cherry & hickory – and lets us iterate on new tastes every day until perfected (traditional whiskey takes 6+ years to even try out a new product). We’re proving that consumers buy rapidly-aged whiskey with new flavors.


Tom Lix




We aim to out-compete traditional distilleries, reinvigorate the craft spirit
movement, and become the world’s largest producer of “just in time” whiskey. The incumbents are stuck with tradition and have massive supply shortages. They’ve done a poor job predicting demand a decade out, plus spend a small fortune holding inventory until then. Not constrained by oak, we aim to dominate the fastest-growing segment of the $25 billion whiskey market: premium flavor extensions. But aged in a day.


  • $1 million+ revenue in 2015.
  • ~50% year over year growth in 2016.
  • Hit Profitability in 2016.
  • Won Gold Medal at 2016 San Francisco International Spirits Competition (& others).
  • 3600 blind taste tests: 54% preferred our whiskey over Knob Creek.
  • Holds U.S. patent 8,889,206 and carefully guarded trade secrets.
  • 166,857 bottles sold in 12 states and 6 countries.
  • $25 billion whiskey market size; 44% of growth in 2015 from new flavors.



I’m an unrepentant young whiskey hater… But do all these whiskeys need to be aged so long? I’ve wondered if I’m just romanticizing the thought of old barrels sitting around old warehouses in Kentucky and Scotland… In May, Cleveland released another rapidly-aged bourbon, Cleveland Underground. Made with “disruptive pressure-aging technology” and finished on black cherry wood, it had a nice added sweetness and was easily the best of all these speedy whiskeys I tried.

Sam McNulty, who owns a half-dozen restaurants in Cleveland, says one or two of his bars will be sold out of Cleveland Whiskey at any given time. “They’re definitely coming back for seconds,” he says. “A lot of the traditionalists, quite frankly, are afraid of what Tom is doing because it’s a very disruptive technology.”
They Call Us Heretics
Whiskey traditionalists believe what we do is heresy and in a way they’re right: we’re doing something completely different. We age our whiskey in 24 hours, using a process that is uniquely our own. We’re a technology company disguised in a whiskey space but don’t misunderstand, our whiskey tastes great. That’s why President Obama came to visit us—we’re innovating a long-stagnant space and making it better, faster and smarter.
Our Whiskey Competes with the Best
Our whiskey has won numerous accolades (and definitely doesn’t lose in blind test-tastes). Our bourbon whiskey finished with black cherry wood has won Double Gold medals at the China Wine & Spirits Awards and the Wine & Spirits Wholesalers Association. We were also just awarded a Gold Medal at the 2016 San Francisco International Spirits Competition and was named a Whiskey Distillary Innovator of the Year at the Berlin International Spirits Competition.


Award-Winning Whiskey in Just 24 Hours
There’s a worldwide whiskey shortage precisely because traditional methods require whiskey to be barrel-aged for 10 years and up, with up to 50% of the liquor evaporating. But we’ve brought whiskey-making into the 21st century. We’ve proven you can make more whiskey, in more flavors, in a shorter amount of time without compromising taste.

How We Do It
Clear Spirits

First thing we do is take in clear spirits that have only sat in an oak barrel for less than a day. This is the base of our bourbon whiskey.


We put carefully measured wood segments into a pressure capable tank and move the clear alcohol in and out of the pore structure of the wood like a sponge.

Pour and Enjoy

It’s made differently but tastes amazing. Our whiskey focuses on concentrating flavor rather than sticking to decades’ old methods.

The Possibilities are Infinite
We’re innovating whiskey beyond cutting the aging process short. Because we don’t age our whiskey in oak barrels for decades, we can explore with all sorts of wood flavors beside the usual oak. That means you can have a whiskey with a pistachio, olive, or magnolia finish. The customizations are endless and are now possible because of our technology.

Join Us for a Drink
May 17th, 2016

On March 1st of 2013, using disruptive and controversial technology, we shipped our first bottle of bourbon whiskey. 100 Proof, it was a dark and flavorful bourbon with the word Cleveland printed in big bold letters right on the front of bottle.

The critics and self-proclaimed experts loudly claimed that what we were doing was wrong. They told us not to rock the boat. They said it was too radical a change, that we should respect tradition, get back in line and make whiskey the same way as everyone else.

We don’t agree.

Despite the controversy and the critics, we’ve been winning Gold Medals at competitions around the world and were recently named Whiskey Distillery Innovator of the Year at the Berlin International Spirits Competition. Today we proudly sell our whiskies in 13 States as well as in Germany, France, Switzerland and Belgium. We’ve also just shipped our first order to Japan.

We’ve been fortunate to attract angel investment from both “radical thinking” individuals and small investment groups but until now the regulations prohibited us from selling shares to the very people that buy our whiskey. Not just “accredited investors” but real people, our customers and supporters that have helped us build this company.

Okay, here’s where I cut to the chase. I’m asking you become part of the disruption, to embrace the controversy and most importantly to help us challenge the status-quo and spread the word.

Please join our group of radical investors, become one of the owners and of course, drink our whiskey.

Tom Lix
Cleveland Whiskey



Tom Lix is Cleveland Whiskey’s founder and CEO. Inspired by the 1970 film MASH, Lix first learned distilling while stationed on a US Navy Destroyer just prior to its decommissioning. With considerable help from an “almost” retired Chief Boiler Technician, he learned to make bootleg spirits from[+ READ MORE]

Tom Lix

Doctorate, Marketing and Management from Boston University. Previously VP of Cleveland Lakefront Development Corporation, and Director and Associate Professor of the Center for Entrepreneurship.
Contact Information:

Tom Lix

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