Here's to Jake!
1350 Distilling is made up for four individuals; two couples that met through the wives who worked together at Douglass Valley Elementary School on the Air Force Academy. Each partner is unique and contributes special talents and personality for our business. This is the first of four biographies of our partners. We hope you get to know each of us.
My name is Jake Weien.
I was born just outside of F.E. Warren Air Force Base in Cheyenne, Wyoming, where my father was stationed. We later moved to Nevada and California where I was raised while he completed 25 years of service with the Air Force Reserves and National Guard.
In 1993, I moved to Flagstaff, Arizona where I studied graphic design and graduated from Northern Arizona University. There I met, fell in love, and started a family with Abbie. We lived there for 16 years before finally transplanting to Colorado Springs. It was long overdue, for we first discovered “The Springs” in the summer of 1995, while taking a road trip throughout Colorado.
We instantly loved this area and encouraged my brother and his wife to check it out when he was medically discharged from the Army’s 4th Cavalry with a brain tumor. They settled in Security while my parents migrated to their new “mountain home” in Woodland Park around the same time. I had attempted to get a job here for many years, but the right opportunity never presented itself. We ended up buying a house in Arizona and delayed the inevitable move.
In 2009, we finally arrived with our two girls in tow, and we have never looked back. The community, the people, and the schools have been a great growing experience for all of us. We think the view is the best in the world too.
It was here, in 2014, that I met Phill and Kandis. Abbie worked with Kandis and we easily became friends. Not long afterwards, Phill approached me with his plans for what is now 1350 Distilling. Inspired by his vision, the four of us have partnered to create a unique brand for all with the emphasis on “Celebrating the American Spirit of our military and their loved ones, one drink at a time.”
Using the stars and stripes as our symbols stirs great emotion in me for multiple reasons. Being the child of an airman, the flag represented not just our country, but our family’s dedication to the United States. Boy Scouts furthered my respect, loyalty, and patriotism – “To do my best to God and my Country.” The flag took on an entirely new meaning when my brother was honored with a 21-gun salute at his funeral. But I also want to acknowledge our differences as Americans, to appreciate that we are all patriots who respect our country, no matter if we agree with all aspects of it. The stars and stripes are less about politics or religion to me, they symbolize history, love, dedication, pride, and remembrance. These things give us purpose…as does being charitable.
From the beginning, the charitable aspect of our distillery excited me. I have admired how Bristol Brewing, New Belgium, and other Colorado microbreweries have contributed so much to their communities. I want our business to do the same, and we are working towards doing that by pledging 10 percent of our profits to local military and family charities through our "Angel Battalion" charitable arm being developed along with our business. We will have more to share about our work with other organizations in due time.
In the meantime, our long days and nights of construction work on our building are coming to a close and we will be entering the stage where my experiences and knowledge will be most helpful. I have maintained my freelance graphic design and illustration business out of my home since 2006. 1350 Distilling offers a great opportunity for me to practice my expertise on our own products, brand, and ad campaigns. I get to build everything for the business from the logos, labels, signs, and menus, to the ads and promotional products. I love it. I also look forward to being a part of the distillation process.
We are building a tasting room that we hope will feel like a comfortable living room for you to come in and celebrate the moment with your friends, family and our spirit(s)!