Thursday, December 21, 2017
St Johnsbury Distillery, formerly known as Dunc’s Mill, was forced to shut down over its name change. St Johnsbury Distillery, formerly known as Dunc’s Mill, was given a cease and desist order from the TTB, Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau the federal agency that controls all distillery operations in the United States, last week.
Owners Dan Hughes, Brendan Hughes and Brian Garvey, purchased the distillery from Duncan Holoday last month. As part of the deal, Holoday will continue in his role as master distiller for a year. One of the new owners planned to move the distillery from Barnet to St Johnsbury in Vermont, hence the name change. Dan Hughes, told the Caledonian Record, “We’ve been given a cease and desist order because we were under the impression that we could use and continue to operate under Duncan’s permits as long as we filed within a 30-day period from closing. Because of the name change, I guess that’s not true.”
Skyler Genest, director of the compliance and enforcement division of the state Department of Liquor Control, says state licenses and federal permits are non-transferable. Genest says the distillery can reopen once it gets authorization from the federal Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau.
The owners are awaiting approval from the TTB, before the cease and desist order can be lifted and they can reopen. St Johnsbury Distillery produces four rums including Dunc’s Maple Rum, Dunc’s Elderflower Rum, Back Woods Reserve Rum and Vermont Rum. Hughes calls the shutdown “devastating.”