Watermelon Sugar isn't just the perfect song

Owner Cindy Wiley of Deviation Distilling shares her go to anytime cocktail

Originally hailing from Pittsburgh, Cindi Wiley comes from a family who owned a number of grocery stores growing up, and she saw firsthand what it took to run a successful business. However, she never thought that one day she herself would be part owner and running a successful business in Colorado.  

In 2019, Cindi, her husband Bob Wiley and head distiller Dave Gade opened Deviation Distilling in Denver’s Santa Fe Arts District. With stunningly beautiful bottles and unique ingredients like Thai basil and Szechuan peppercorns, Deviation Distilling has become the destination for approachable gins and one-of-a-kind cocktails. Deviation’s flagship products include three unique gins: Mountain Herb, Citrus Rosé and Spice Trade.  

Leveraging her degree in graphic design, Cindi spearheads the design of the award-winning bottles, which won the 2019 Gold Medal for Excellence in Packaging Brand Identity from the American Distilling Institute. Leveraging her love of spirits, she loves developing cocktails for the lounge, which currently include a Thai Gin Paloma, Give it a Chai and Pomegranate Sour. Meanwhile, they have developed an entirely new line of coffee-inspired whiskies under the Deviation umbrella, Barista Spirits, while Bob is constantly working on their distribution strategy. Deviation is currently available throughout Colorado as well as five other states and hopes to add a few more states in 2021. 

Cindi lives in South of Denver with Bob and her two children: Ava, 17 and Nick, 14. In the little free time she has, she loves hiking with her dogs and skiing with her family. 

Watermelon Mint Refresher Cocktail Recipe

1-1.5 cup of fresh watermelon pieces

1 oz. simple syrup

5 oz fresh squeezed lemon juice

8 mint leaves

1.5 oz Deviation Citrus Rosé Gin

Soda water to top

Serves: 1

Instructions: Add the watermelon and mint leaves to a shaker glass and muddle until all the watermelon juice has been released. Add simple syrup, lemon juice and Deviation Citrus Rosé Gin along with ice to the shaker. Shaker vigorously for 30 seconds. Double strain into a Collins glass, filled with ice and top with a splash of soda water. Garnish with a fresh mint leaf.

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