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Inaugural Sunshine Spirits Festival brings Florida’s best craft distilleries to Tampa

Assortment of different gins and whiskey bottles on a bar table

Imbibers will have the opportunity to try spirits and cocktails from more than 30 local distilleries at Dark Door Spirits on October 2nd as part of the Sunshine Spirits Festival.

A cross-bay event, the inaugural Sunshine Spirits Festival is coming to Tampa Bay this October. The first-of-its-kind festival is being put on the by the Florida Craft Spirits Association. The goal is to showcase and celebrate Florida’s many local, craft distilleries, giving attendees the opportunity to try spirits from across the state and to be educated by the spirits makers themselves.

More than 30 distillers are participating in the two-day festival, which will include one event on either side of the Bay.

On Friday, October 1 from 7-10 pm, St. Pete’s Kozuba and Sons Distillery will play host to the festival’s VIP party, which is limited to 200 tickets sold. The VIP event will exclusively feature rare and limited-edition spirits from the participating distilleries, and is an opportunity for a more intimate conversation with those who produce the spirits. The ticket also includes food and live music.

On Saturday, October 2 from 12-6 pm, the main event of the Sunshine Spirits Festival takes place at Tampa’s Dark Door Spirits, the popular distillery and event space on Anderson Road. Tickets for Saturday’s event include samplings of spirits and cocktails from more than 30 distilleries, as well as music, food trucks and giveaways throughout the afternoon.

Sunshine Spirits Festival aims to showcase Florida’s craft distilleries

Courtesy FCSA

The Florida Craft Spirits Association (FCSA) was established in 2020 to serve as the voice for the Florida handcrafted distilled spirits industry, and FCSA President David Cohen says the organization has been working on the Sunshine Spirits Festival since day one.

“We are beyond excited to be launching the first annual Sunshine Spirits Festival, an event endorsed by craft spirit producers that showcases all of the great craft spirits from across the state of Florida,” he said. “This is the culmination of years of work, and we look forward to growing this festival in the years ahead.”

Tickets for the inaugural Sunshine Spirits Festival are available online. VIP and Main Event tickets can be purchased individually, or as a package at a discounted price.

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