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Alumni Shares World Class Moonshine University Experience

Published on:

July 23, 2019


Eric W. Olson Talks Spirits Education in Exclusive Got Rum Interview.

Got Rum recently profiled Moonshine University alum Eric W. Olson, Owner and Craft Distiller at Central Coast Distillery. Olson graduated in February 2019 from our 5-Day Rum Course, made possible through a partnership with The Rum University. He also successfully completed our Fermentation Workshop in March 2018, a collaboration between Moonshine University, Wilderness Trail Distillery, and Ferm Solutions.

Here is what Olson had to say about his experience at the world’s epicenter for spirits education:

Moonshine University remains my favorite place to hang my toke. The 5-day Rum Course with The Rum University is, hands down, the best distilling class out there. There was so much to take in and it was not limited to simply rum, but served to broaden our repertoire on spirits in general. In addition, it offered the opportunity to network with others in the distillery business worldwide. We captured the latest and greatest aged rums and sipped them in a classroom setting. Definitely one to attend for so many reasons. Honestly, I never thought Kentucky could be so much fun and being on The Whiskey Trail was fascinating and worth staying in town for an extra day.

My overall favorite fermentation class was also through Moonshine University and taught by Dr. Patrick Heist, where we studied the impact of the various unique yeast strains. It was interesting to learn the science and its impact on production which, in turn, affects profitability.

Olson shows no signs of slowing down; he returned to Moonshine University once again in June 2019 for our Whisk(e)y Workshop, proving that you can never get too much of a good thing.

We hope you’ll join us soon for a class a Moonshine University. You can learn more about our 5-Day Rum Course, Fermentation Workshop, and Whiskey Workshop below, or check out our full list of class offerings here.

Follow this link to view the full interview, conducted by Margaret Ayala and originally published on Got Rum.


About Our 5-Day Rum Course

Attracting established and aspiring rum distillers and brand owners from across the globe, our 5-Day Rum Course offers the most comprehensive rum training in the world. This course provides a balanced combination of theory and practice, guiding attendees through everything from the financial and marketing considerations involved in the business, to the hands-on production, aging, and blending of the spirit itself. Students also explore the history of rum production and its primary world markets, as well as delve into a variety of rum expressions, classifications, and sensory notes. Thanks to instruction from industry leaders — like Luis Ayala, Rum Consultant at Rum Runner Press, Inc. students leave this course well-equipped to properly produce and commercialize high-quality rums in an increasingly competitive economic landscape.

About Our Fermentation Workshop

Fermentation is the conversion of sugars into alcohol. In the spirits business, alcohol = money, which means the success of your finished product relies on the efficiency of your fermentation process. This course, taught by Dr. Patrick Heist, chief scientific officer at Ferm Solutions and Wilderness Trail Distillery, shows students how to perfect that process, covering a variety of key fermentation considerations and best practices. In this course, we’ll explore everything from the microbiology and cultivation of yeast, to the stages of its life cycle, paying special attention to how different variables affect the quality and consistency of fermentation in the spirits production process. Students will leave this course with an extensive understanding of the fermentation process, including how to obtain the optimal yield from every set and how to appropriately address any fermentation challenges that arise.


About Our Whisk(e)y Workshop

Become a whiskey connoisseur with this two-day intermediate course examining everything whiskey! Taught by Matt Strickland, head distiller at District Distilling, this course covers a wide variety of classifications — including Irish, Scotch, Canadian, American, and even new craft whiskeys made from non-traditional grains — detailing the individual distillate components and production processes for each, standards of identity, and relationship to other whiskeys. Students will receive an in-depth understanding of whiskey production, including malting, smoking, mashing, fermenting, traditional and alternative aging techniques, and making cuts. Hands-on, small-scale product development with table-top distillation allows participants to experiment further with these processes before moving onto the larger equipment in our distillery. Finally, we’ll return to our roots by examining the history of whiskey, before discussing the best ways to guide consumers through an informative and engaging sensory evaluation of this versatile spirit.

See our full list of class offerings.

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