Richland, NJ – Lazy Eye Distillery is the little distillery that could. In the last month, the South Jersey distillery has received seven awards in international spirit competitions in both Seattle and New York.
The company’s flagship product, Lazy Eye Vodka, continues to dominate the spirit competition scene. Lazy Eye Vodka won the Competition’s Top Honor for “Best In Class” at the Seattle International Spirit Awards amongst submissions from some of the world’s largest and most prestigious vodka companies.
The distillery’s two other submissions in Seattle, Lazy Eye Oak Aged Vodka and Lazy Eye Raki with Anise were also awarded gold medals. Lazy Eye Distillery also won four medals at the New York International Spirits Competition this spring including New Jersey Distillery of the year for the second consecutive year. Over six hundred spirits from around the world competed in the NYISC.
The family run business entered their first spirit competition last fall and had since been awarded 11 medals for their 12 submissions. All products are made by hand by Carol & Nick Kafkalas and their two sons, Nicholas and Anthony. “This has been an incredible experience. Last fall when we found out that we won our first medals it was really humbling. However, the recognition for Best in Class is extremely special. Seeing that the judges picked us, our small family made Vodka over internationally renowned spirits is an honor. Our family is so extremely proud, and we know that our dads are smiling down on us,” said Carol Kafkalas We take a lot of extra time in creating our spirits since we are making everything from scratch.
Consumers who enjoy craft spirits are very knowledgeable and can recognize when no shortcuts are being taken. The judge’s stamp of approval validates the hard work that we put into every bottle said Co-owner Nick Kafkalas, Sr. “I spend a lot of time operating the stills, and I know that we take pride in our process. We are only two and a half years old as a company, and we have already won 11 medals. I’m very excited. I always told people that the best vodka in the world is made in South Jersey. It’s cool to be able to prove it now,” said Nick Kafkalas, Jr.
“It is such an incredible thing to see what started out as a dream in our garage and basement grow and blossom into something of this magnitude. Our family takes tremendous pride in everything we do and to see all that hard work validated on a national level is such a surreal feeling” said Anthony Panetta.
The Seattle International Spirits Awards is The Pacific Northwest’s largest and most comprehensive distilled spirits and liqueurs awards program. Recognizing and celebrating award-winning spirits with consumers, enthusiasts, and industry professionals. The Seattle International Spirits Awards (SISA) hosts a two-day single-blind evaluation of local, regional, national and international artisan, craft and popular distilled products and liqueurs from around the world. Recognition Levels include Best of Class, Double Gold, Gold, and Silver Awards of Excellence.
The Lazy Eye Distillery has locations in Richland and Wildwood, NJ. The Wildwood location is open five days a week during the summer, and the Richland location is open to the public on Saturdays. When you enter the Lazy Eye Distillery tasting rooms, you are always greeted by a family member. Current hours of operation and events can be found at www.lazyeyedistillery.com.