Like many small businesses across the country, Blue Clover Distillery in Scottsdale is struggling to stay afloat during the coronavirus crisis.
“The past few days have been an interesting frenzy,” the distillery’s owner, Weston Holm, says. “We’ve gone from having to lay off restaurant employees to having to transition our focus to stay alive.”
Known for its vodka and gin, Blue Clover had to get creative to keep up. Its solution? Start making hand sanitizer to help the community combat COVID-19.
Last Wednesday, the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax Trade Bureau sent out a statement to distilleries, granting them approval to start making hand sanitizer without the usual regulatory obstacles.
“We get an email from the government saying, ‘Hey, you’re a small distillery and if you want to help support right now, you can. Here’s your formal approval,’” Holm says.
Brewing a batch of hand sanitizer isn’t all that different than distilling spirits, Holm says. Instead of diluting the alcohol so it’s safe to drink, the distillery cuts down the proof from 190 to 75 percent and adds glycerin and peroxide.
Blue Clover is currently charging patrons by the ounce. Customers can bring in their own container of any size and fill it up with the life-saving liquid. The distillery is “working diligently” to get their own bottles and labels, Holm says.
Blue Clover is currently the only distillery in the Valley manufacturing the coveted product, but Holm hopes other businesses follow suit.
“We’re trying to give back to as many people as we can,” he says.
To remedy the decrease in sales and ensure the community’s safety, Blue Clover is also providing its premium spirits and food items for delivery and takeout.
Blue Clover Distillery
7042 E. Indian School Rd., Scottsdale