Welcome to our “Meet a Local” series where we introduce you to locals from Lake Murray Country who love the region. Make sure to say “hi,” when you see them around and catch more interviews on our website, LakeMurrayCountry.com!
Deep Carolina roots & a passion for quality…The shade of old oak trees hides a red barn overlooking the waters of Lake Murray, the waters the Amick family have called home for ten generations. Their story in this area dates back to the days of King George II when South Carolina was still an English Colony. With Faith, Family, and Hard Work still guiding them, the Amick’s will be right here continuing their stewardship of land and community just as generations past. Let’s meet the family behind the award-winning spirits!
Who are the Amicks?
High school sweethearts, faith-oriented parents, community-minded entrepreneurs, hardworking professionals, friendly, welcoming business owners. Craig Amick is the 9th generation of the Emig (later Amick) family who immigrated from Germany in 1752 receiving a land grant for property underneath what is now Lake Murray. Generations of Amick’s have been entrepreneurs and stewards of the land ever since.
Meredith Stillwell Amick, is the daughter of a local pastor who served the Gilbert community. After meeting in grade school, the pair became high school sweethearts, moving on to Clemson University to receive engineering degrees before marrying back in their hometown and settling into their careers and starting a family.
What inspired you to open a distillery here in Lake Murray Country?
A good family friend was part of a large moonshining family in the Gilbert/Leesville area many years ago. When the opportunity to open micro-distilleries in SC became available, we asked him to bring along decades of expertise and help us set up a legal distillery. When he agreed, we began purchasing property, building a facility and completing the required federal, state and county licensing processes. We have now been open almost 8 years right in the community that Craig’s family has been a part of for 10 generations and have expanded our product offering to include High Cotton Bourbon, William Alan Bourbon, 34.08 Whiskey, Low Water Vodka, and White Hot Cinnamon Whiskey, in addition to Hollow Creek Moonshine.
What has been the most rewarding aspect for you about running Hollow Creek?
The past year has provided some great opportunities. As we got further into and better recognized at industry events, we had several industry insiders encouraging us to enter our products in the major spirits competitions. We took a leap of faith.
We were thrilled when we got the email from the Los Angeles International Spirits Competition sharing our win- a total of 6 medals! Two gold, two silver and two gold packaging awards. We barely finished toasting our win, when the second round of medals was announced from the San Francisco World Spirits Competition.
About a month after that, word came from the New York International Spirits Competition, that our William Alan scored 96 points to earn DOUBLE GOLD (meaning a unanimous decision for the judges) and they were recognizing us as SC Distillery of the Year.
Is there anything exciting you have planned for the future of the business?
One exciting development to keep an eye out for will be our Barrel Adoption Program. This will provide an opportunity to “adopt” a barrel of our bourbon to be your own. We’re still polishing the program before launch, but it will include opportunities to sample single barrels of bourbon, adopt whole or fractional barrels at different ages, and customized packaging. Also, over the next year or two we’re going to be expanding our wholesale distribution significantly after signing an agreement with a new distribution partner. Of course, everyone loves a special release from time to time. This year, we’ve had two. The first was a barrel of High Cotton that was finished in a cabernet sauvignon barrel for six months. This was followed by our first release of a barrel strength, single barrel of William Alan. Finally, we’ve even been dipping our toes in the event space and have hosted a couple of comedy shows, brought out some musicians and food trucks, hosted community events involving local artisans and crafters, as well as hosting regular blood drives and even a wedding rehearsal! Certainly, be on the lookout for more events to come!
Next time you’re in the area stop by for a free tasting and tour at the distillery. Learn more about Hollow Creek Distillery by visiting their website, HollowCreekDistillery.com.
Deep Carolina roots & a passion for quality…The shade of old oak trees hides a red barn overlooking the waters of Lake Murray, the waters the Amick family have called home for ten generations.