Distillation Basics Workshop

Tuesday and Wednesday, June 4 - 5, 2019
8:30 am - 3:30 pm both days

MSU Distillery

You must be at least 21 years old to attend this workshop.

New still

Registration fee of $400 includes lunches and support materials.


Directions and accommodations

Program details

The 2019 Distillation Basics Workshop, June 4 - 5, is designed for those considering or already involved in craft distillation. This workshop will be led by Dr. Karl Wilker, Research Professor and MSU Winery and Distillery Manager, and is limited to 8 participants to provide a personalized learning experience. Lecture and demonstration will be conducted in the distillery at Mountain Grove during the two day training session. Those attending will receive a booklet that covers the lecture information where notes can be taken for future referencing. Lunch and refreshments during breaks are provided each day.

Topics covered include:

  • Basics of the distillation process and equipment
  • Demonstrations will be carried out with a Bavarian Holstein column still with reflux
  • Basics of materials used to make distilled products with emphasis on rum, distilled grape spirits, grappa, eau de vies, and fruit brandies and infusions
  • Using sensory evaluation to determine when to make cuts between the heads, hearts and tails during the distillation process
  • Proofing
  • Tasting of distilled fruit brandies and other products

The Missouri State University Winery is a commercially licensed winemaking and distillation facility located at the State Fruit Experiment Station in Mountain Grove. The workshop is offered by the MSU Darr College of Agriculture headed by Dr. Ron Del Vecchio, Dean.

The distillation program has commercially produced rum, brandies and liqueurs.

Dr. Karl Wilker
Research Professor of Enology and Distillation

C. J. Odneal Jr.
Cellar Technician, Mountain Grove, Mo.


Marilyn Odneal 
Clinical Instructor and Vineyard Manager

Leslie Akers
Workshop Facilitator

Missouri State University
Winery and Distillery
Darr College of Agriculture
Mountain Grove Campus
9740 Red Spring Road
Mountain Grove, MO 65711-2999