Brian McKenzie is a former vice president of an upstate New York bank, and Thomas Earl McKenzie is a winemaker, brewer and distiller from Monroeville, Alabama. They met at a conference in 2007 (nope, they're not related!), and their shared passion for spirits led them to open a distillery together.
The Finger Lakes area of New York is home to many wineries and farms that produce excellent ingredients for distilling, so it was a perfect place for them. They buy all their ingredients as locally as possible and work to minimize waste, including giving their spent grain to local farms to feed livestock and using reclaimed wood to build their floors and bar.