1/20 Buffalo Means Business w/ Nick Kotrides- Uncle Jumbo

Buffalo Means Business
Saturday, January 20th

Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.

Thank you for tuning in to buffalo means business on news radio 930 WB EL I'm Randy bush over the program highlights local businesses and services in the region and if there's a local business or service you'd like to hear from. Send me an email at Randy dot bush over @entercom.com. When this for the segment nick could Trace from uncle jumbos vodka distillery and may be relatively new to some people so. I guess the first thing we have to do was establish. Will you aren't where you are. Greg thanks for inviting me. Venom here certain color story and tell people who we are as you said in what we do and how we do it. I started out back in 1989 I Amy transplant. A felonious so I'm from actually the other center Rochester came to school awful state. Met my wife sat routes raise a family and tired of business so 1989 we had. A bar. I'm only avenue cult fair eased back in the day it was roses from an ration. And we were there from 1989 until a couple of years ago so we are twenty years and only avenue and then in 2002001. We opened up. We've built. Toro Toro Tampa's bar that's those right next door. Which was in new building and on what won the first new constructed buildings and and only avenue. That did a little different cuisine that people were used to we do the Tampa's bar. Where people came in and well what they did as what they ordered all together like you would do with the Stanley tool would share their plates they would savor the experience and it was a social setting TE and then from there we went to. Her Levy and went to north buffalo would open up. Empire compared grow their free yours so before we started. Making. Who's making alcohol making spears buck if you will. So we did in the food and beverage now we're just about rich. So you. Had to have been fairly successful and in your opening up the place right next orderly place you know you start out with the bargaining effort restaurant next the bark and then you have another restaurant that you set up. Why the shift all of a sudden from that to something totally while not completely different but somewhat different and vodka does still well after. Or 2030 years ills longer I grew up in this business are in the food and beverage business Russia business it was time for a change just know that when. When Monday strolls around and you know looking forward to going north of San for change and to be honest with you. The field got too competitive to any place the world opened up. I knew it was time for a change time for a pivot I was too young to retire but really too old to learn new tricks. So poses gonna do my and have all this networking and bringing experience from being in the business for thirty years so ice I've always had. This dream if you will. To make spears is in effect on her eleven that was suppose my initial concept was to have a little micro distillery. In the restaurant. But after doing some due diligence he just find out that at that time. It was too highly regulated and that tax implication. That would come with that was too great so when the opportunity came in in the industry was deregulated I jumped in with both feet. And one of the things that is the basic two vodka distilling is you just need something that has some sugars in it right so you can use any number of and greedy. It's you could for men and garbage plea. Really. But we do a little we too little different worried where Alex call ourselves a scratch distillery. For the for for the purpose. Then we meet our alcohol we don't buy it. Now people have herder commercials and that's one of our tag lines we make it we don't buy it. We get our greens from locally sourced farms. So thick that the corn comes in in the American Varco. Part of our label of our brand is that we're using greens that's indigenous to the Americans so the porn. Is what makes it an American back. And of course Americans are making it but uncle jumbos American bachus made with corn. 100% core we don't use any mall in our process which also makes it 100% include pre. So that's how I looked at if you look at the bottle himself it looks like a whiskey I'm trying to brand. This invited different than any other Viacom shelf if you look at on the shelf for the success chipped tooth in the smile you notice it instantly. It looks like it should be long the packaging should belong in the whiskey section. So uncle jumble. Sounds different than your smear archer and here's grey goose is your bang goes your Belvedere ovals other fancy greens were not fancy. Or are necessary we don't fire vodka they make from scratch and if it's not sourced locally. It's American me. My labels come from my label. In Akron. I'd buy our glass locally. It's American glance my distillery is made with American steel. The equipment was made in America my quote was mean Noory in so I'm not utilizing any. Metals that are foreign and I'm not using a neat equipment. That was made in China or overseas. And we should probably at this point establish that the name itself as a local origin to accidentally it was picked up from overseas it was important for me that that. My brain he wasn't. To some picked up the sky because it sounds cool was into. Something like I don't know we've we take that had our climate that we have for five. Five months out of the year wanna call it you know below freezing anything silly like that. Uncle jumble people don't know this and get past all the time so I put I put it on the bottle put Grover Cleveland on the bottle. And it's as Grover Cleveland but we took it and we took their torture off 1000 dollar bill people don't realize because. There's nothing higher than a hundred in nineteen if there were I don't know how into our club house and our bills and their pockets recognize a Grover Cleveland came from that. But yet Grover Cleveland is. Welcome jumble us a clue Jumbo who's the second largest president. He's a Clinton are neck of the woods. In Clarence and he was that the hanging sheriff and Jiri company he had quite a colorful history. He was recruited to become the mayor of buffalo because of his honesty. He ended up being the governor near state in the only even to this date the only president. In the union that had. Two terms or not consecutive so he won he lost anyone. So we decide to use uncle jumble that fit the branding of an American brand that's really no different than a Jack Daniels or Jim beam and old granddad. Have an Americana behind and so we use uncle jumble local jumbos nickname. Big Steve was another nickname it's better affect his first name was actually Steve Grover was a middle name. Let's talk a little bit about the process itself of making a vodka once you've chosen what item it is you're going to make it from in your case the corn. How does corn gold from being corn to becoming vodka. Corn. Is not used often in. The vodka industry. It is and Berman because permanent to have at least two to 1% of your spears has seen me it was court. Corn is a harsh. Harsh green to vegetable. When you cook it when you eat when this mean Cronin and when it tries out of it's it's agreeing. Corn does not have natural. Enzymes to break down the starch chains to make formidable sugars and it sounds. I failed chemistry is so it's gonna say I like you have some chemistry veteran and a you do it's a failed one. But what happens is that because it has long chains if you will fee if the mansion like your belt and beat you ask an organism like east. To eat it it's too too big. What we do is we we don't pull mall and I said listen to gain enough community we don't use Malta breakdown. Those chains so they can be consumable. So we use when enzymes multiple enzymes he's more please and because of that that's what makes a 100% goes free so. The end sensor put in breaks down the sarge chains. Known for men are from five days that's we we. Extract Gil Kaufman. Andy distilling process continues. From there it's rule went Elkins a piping so this is via technically applauding it. I told this in all of our tastings and I tell people all the time that. And you'll hear this from anybody else but when I've come to realize. When I was in the restaurant business and don't have people on they're all key accounts there're there're people there were being brought in to talk to me about pushing. Their brand coming up the market. And denying the it SA had a thousand people over and Google too high but I'm disease from the numbers we had a thousand will come through my doors. 999. Of them all said the same thing you know are our product is the past where we're great fantastic. Now one Kamen says that are. We're country. It's like a parent never said that when the babies born inevitably. So the one person community need to homey out of all my years in business he took home he specifically about this process a stock. And the greens the distilling is just part of the story we give you a very very narrow cot of our run. My boys in iron from the still and literally we have our hands and then alcohol stream commands to the parent. We smell. We do little taste. We feel it its oil leak it soon is that. That rubbing alcohol smell that's associated with a vodka is gone that's only start collecting there. Or spear so poignant point 5% of our round is discarded. And 60% of their bottle that your drinking his water. So if you're buying these fancy vodka is the other 303540. There's knock it out there there's 64 dollars 6% of his water. We notify stage filtration process. We Sarnoff filtering our water before it Coke so there's no chlorine that alters our mash. And after that it goes through soft water process. Goes through reverse osmosis process. And we charcoal filter the end product place that's feisty just. And that's what you want anyways you want necessarily something smooth it's not something harsh to people you would think crying please let it be easier to enjoy them but that's not that's not the case. Again back to marketing. No more of the run that you collect. In your barrels the more profitably while. And so what are these big guys do they. You see on these fancied drink menus and a high you can mix it the more stuff you mix it with the more that you can hide the taste with. It it's really. Amazing how they've duped every so you never hear of vodka being he sipping spears. This is why were in a whiskey bottle we are so smooth. And so clean. We have like a very soft. Feeling to the Pallet because of our process so you'll see what do you make this lets you make do with maybe three ice cubes. Reported a glass of Iraq's class and an optional if you want to put Norman and citing. Have a feeling that we could talk more about the process and both of us would be thoroughly entertained here but we're also running the clock time. And I wanted to give him a little bit you mention the bottles in the labeling all done locally 2 PM and it was fairly easy as you mentioned to get a picture for that label. But all the stuff cost money Alden that the filtration system all this so look what kind of how late can get like a rough idea of what it would cost just. It started in this we now of over well over at this point and a half million dollars a cement cost. And this is the difficult part. Lucky enough then. The cinnamon in my fifties. Hum I have. Stanley that its ports and so it's a family business and we're doing this altogether. I've gone through thirty years of being in the industry. The great thing about. Having been licensed in the past. Is that I wasn't worried about being licensed in the present. That means that the way the thing that the way there is a little detriment that terminal. Clauses that keeps you from doing this and Jimenez because in 1979 Jimmy Carter. Had deregulated. The beer in the wine industry when it came to how you can make it where he can make and you can be human doozies here he via the committee beer home to me climate if you meet. Vodka whiskey or found. So. House in this industry thirty years one you will where what I had to look for I just didn't come off the street and say you know what how cool would be to become a Stiller so. The cashew. We need your equipment. We need to serial numbers and equipment we need to see architectural drawings of your space and then after you've watcher equipment. And you we should space or botch a space then we'll give you an answer whether they're applications then approved a mention. Being how I half million dollars and still waiting for the approval to do business. But. It worked you know god bless and here we are talking to talk to you. Yes and then in future. I mean the viking is one of the easier things to get out there is a product to yeah plans to branch out into other lavish. Well here's what we've been in again in use this this charitably woodham last. We had plans of coming out and we still do coming on the flavored vodka. But because. We've had such great success with uncle tumbles American vodka we're keeping up with print the productions to cycle so we don't. Have store shelves that run dry. As soon as we speak catch up and we have enough. Of par values are up and inventory. I'm hoping that we come up with the uncle tumbles country lemon vodka by the spring. Definitely something also boom. One last thing here where the first ones in your state has crept series they have the one point 75 leaders' commands the jumble size. So I couldn't go much lower price you can find our bottles on the shelves for your between. 2123 dollars I couldn't go much lower at the time so I a added value. To the Magnum bottles. By having them anywhere between 3336. Hours at which the between our savings because a mag is equivalent to 2.3 of the 750s. Good point out nick pleasure having you on leading and you back and talk a lot more about the process was a pleasure meeting in person I. I've known you mean for many many years. I'm glad that. That we've met today thank you for having mr. nick could treat this with a uncle jumbos vodka distillery also brought by sons Chris and Alex to a help out in the process this is buffalo means business on news radio 930 WB yen.