Monday, October 3, 2022

Momentum Spirits will be Wilmington’s first boutique distillery, complete with an NC shaped bottle

Owner of Momentum Surf and Skate Hunter Ford is planning on launching a new spirits brand "Momentum Spirits" in May (Port City Daily photo/COURTESY HUNTER FORD)
Owner of Momentum Surf and Skate Hunter Ford is planning on launching a new spirits brand “Momentum Spirits” in May (Port City Daily photo/COURTESY HUNTER FORD)

WILMINGTON — Hunter Ford opened Momentum Surf and Skate nearly 10-years ago in downtown Wilmington, now, he has big plans for the Momentum brand, and for Wilmington’s downtown. Ford’s plans for the brand include bringing the first boutique distillery to the area – Momentum Spirits.

In an attempt to build the momentum brand, Ford plans on dropping the title of surf and skate from the storefront, but the shop will still stay true to its roots and keep the surf and skate vibe, Ford said. He managed to purchase the building Momentum is now located in in 2011 after renting for several years.

In his latest venture, Ford has patented a decorative bottle shaped like the State of North Carolina in which he plans on selling Momentum Spirits.

The first spirit that will be distilled is a North Carolina Vodka, Ford said the flavor profile of the vodka is similar to the current best-selling Tito’s Vodka.

Momentum in downtown will serve as the store front and home base for the brand, but for the moment the distilling will not take place at the location – but eventually he hopes to move the operation in house.

The so-called Brunch Bill approved last June not only allowed for restaurants and stores to sell alcohol before noon, but also loosened the restrictions on distilleries. The law now allows for the sale of up to five bottles of liquor per customer per calendar year direct from the distiller, Ford said.

There are still some restrictions that forbid interstate sales of alcohol, for instance someone visiting from New York would not be able to purchase a bottle from the store, but that is something Ford hopes to see changed in the future.

For now, the liquor will be distilled in a location Ford described as, “On the way to Raleigh.” Visitors hoping to purchase the spirits can do so at that location he said.

The spirits will also be available for purchase in local ABC Stores and local bars and restaurants, he said.

Momentum is just one of Ford’s projects around Wilmington, he is also the owner of Burnt Mill Creek, has a radio show every Saturday called Dollars and Sense. Most recently, became an aspiring politician. Ford is running against current incumbent for North Carolina’s District 19 State Representative Ted Davis Jr.

Ford will be Davis’ first opponent in a primary election in seven years.


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