GRIFTON, N.C. (WNCT) — The official ribbon cutting ceremony at Social House Vodka’s new distillery location in Kinston took place Monday evening.
The distillery set up shop in an old power plant that has been vacant since the 1970s.
The distillery means more to Kinston than just craft vodka. It will also bring jobs to the city.
“A big push for our renaissance that’s happening downtown is repurposing buildings and turning what is a vacant property into something that is productive and back on the tax books and producing employees and great products and services,” said Kinston Mayor B.J. Murphy. “And that is exactly what you’re seeing here today.”
Co-founder of Social House Vodka Mark Mullins said they plan to add a handful of jobs in the next month, and possibly up to 40 over the next few years.
Mullins said the city of Kinston really attracted them.
“They’ve really got a thriving downtown with Chef and the Farmer and Mother Earth Brewery, the Boiler Room. They’ve got the Mother Earth Motor Lodge now. You know we felt like we could come in and assist in building and helping by offering jobs and creating jobs in eastern North Carolina, in Kinston.”
Social House is a North Carolina-based operation, and the grains used in the vodka actually come from corn farmers right up the road.
They look to join Mother Earth Brewing as economic catalysts for the city of Kinston.
Since opening in 2008, Mother Earth has had a tremendous impact on the area, supporting not only their business, but surrounding businesses as well. Sugar Hill Pizzeria opened up next door to Mother Earth over a year, and has been reaping the benefits.
“They brought a lot of people in wanting to come and see the brewery and do the tap room,” said Allie Stainback.