Become a Distilling Expert at Moonshine University

Have you ever been on a brilliant distillery tour and found yourself wanting to know even more about the process of distilling? Or are you already a knowledgeable distiller who wants to know how you can take your craft to the next level? Anyone who enjoys drinking and nerding out about spirits should consider enrolling in Moonshine University. The name may be a combination of words from two seemingly different worlds, but there’s nothing amateur about this education. 

Moonshine University was founded in Louisville, Kentucky, in 2012 for the purpose of providing world-class, hands-on training for distillery professionals. It became the exclusive education provider of the Kentucky Distillers’ Association in 2013. Read on to discover the benefits of attending Moonshine University.

Learn From Seasoned Industry Leaders

At Moonshine University, you’ll learn from experts in all kinds of relevant areas. The faculty is comprised of leaders in all aspects of the industry, from production to distribution to law. Regardless of what course (or courses) you attend, you’ll be given hands-on education by professionals with decades of experience in all things distillery. There are nearly a hundred teachers on faculty, including those from industry giants like Jim Beam, Wild Turkey, and Maker’s Mark – to name a few!                                      

Choose Your Specialty or Try Something New

Although it is located in major bourbon producer Louisville, Kentucky, the University has courses on more than bourbon, partnering with experts in rum, tequila, and American, Canadian, and Scotch whiskey. Choose the course or courses that are most relevant to you and your goals! 

Moonshine University Courses in 2023 

  • 6-Day Distiller Course: July 23-28, 2023; October 22-27, 2023
  • Botanical Spirits Workshop: August 16-18, 2023
  • Rum Workshop: September 6-8, 2023
  • Barrel Aging Workshop: September 11-12, 2023
  • Whisk(e)y Workshop: September 14-15, 2023
  • Distilling Operations Course: October 9-11, 2023
  • Sensory Workshop: October 12-13, 2023
  • Fermentation Workshop: October 16-17, 2023

ALREADY SOLD OUT: Canadian Whisky Workshop; 6-Day Distiller Course for the Month of May; Virtual Learning Opportunities 

Unfortunately, some of the 2023 courses have already filled up. Claim your spot in an open one today! With these dates, it looks like you could even knock out two or three courses — especially if you’re from out of town. If you register at least four weeks before the class, your tuition covers a room at Moonshine University’s contracted hotel. Tuition also includes all of the course materials, food (breakfast, lunch, and refreshments), and transportation between the hotel and campus.                            

Expand Your Expertise in a Short Time 

These intensive courses give you access to lifetimes of knowledge and experience in a matter of days. With esteemed industry experts guiding you through this hands-on training, you get what Moonshine University’s website calls “the highest proof education money can buy.”

Of course, it’s clever, but it’s also an apt description for the potency of the skills and knowledge gained in such a short time. Just like at an actual accredited university, however, the courses at Moonshine University are a big investment. Those looking to break into or advance in the distilling world will find it to be money well spent, but it may not be the appropriate atmosphere (or price!) for a bachelor party trip. Luckily, Louisville has plenty of distilleries that would be a better fit!     

Other Services Through Moonshine University

If you’re unable to attend any courses through Moonshine University this year, that doesn’t mean you have to miss out on all it has to offer. In addition to the 2, 3, and 6-day intensive courses, Moonshine University offers a range of services to help you succeed in the spirits and distilling industry.  

Here are the additional ways Moonshine University can support your business or craft:

  • Product Development
  • Private & Custom Education
  • On-Site Consulting
  • My Craft Distillery

Most of the services on this list are self-explanatory, but My Craft Distillery is

a “once-in-a-lifetime opportunity” that seems to be a service unique to Moonshine University. For this service, you and a guest spend a whole week working as distillers. Then you get to keep what you make!    

  • Bulk Spirits Sourcing
  • Bourbon Certification

See something that piques your interest or that you could use assistance with? Find out more about all of these services on Moonshine University’s website. While you’re there, you can check out the faculty page to read about the team of experts you could learn from. They even have merchandise, so you can proudly promote your alma mater once you’ve graduated. Sadly, there are no “Moonshine University Dad” shirts at this campus apparel store. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are a few of Moonshine University’s most frequently asked questions:

Who should attend Moonshine University?

Moonshine University is a commitment of money and time, and as such it is really for those who are serious about distilling in a professional capacity. That may include entrepreneurs who are interested in starting a distillery or creating their own brand of distilled alcohol; professionals from the industry who want a well-rounded understanding and knowledge of the art, science, and business of beverage alcohol; anyone looking to break into or advance their career in the distilling industry; and distillery owners and operators who want to become specialists in a certain area or to improve a specific aspect of their business.

What will I learn?

The 6-Day Distiller Course gives a full overview of both the craft of distilling and the beverage alcohol industry as a whole. This involves a combination of thorough technical training and business management education by nearly 100 industry experts. The course covers every facet of the craft and the industry, from sourcing raw materials and using best manufacturing practices to branding, marketing, and getting your product into stores, bars, and more — all through intensive, practical, hands-on learning.

The 2-day and 3-day workshops aim to advance understanding and skills in specific areas of the business through practical study and hands-on application in a classroom setting.

What do I get to take away from the course?

You will be able to keep your binder of all your learning materials, but you will also come away with a network of professional contacts from all over the beverage alcohol industry. Additionally, courses and workshops allow the invaluable opportunity to engage personally with a number of experts from the business in settings where their expertise can really shine. 


DistilleryNearby is the place to find all the distilleries in and around Kentucky or any given area. Plan your distillery tour adventures today, or check out other posts to see what else the world of craft spirits has to offer.

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