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Middletown distillery opens its doors Saturday

White Dog Distilling Company will open Saturday at 1357 Central Ave. in Middletown with a “Grip It and Sip It” soft opening event.

The event is a soft opening meant to give staffers a chance to hone their bartending skills, according to a Facebook post by the business on Wednesday.

The new distillery plans to hold an official grand opening celebration Nov. 17.

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Mike and Debbie Dranschak earlier this year purchased the portion of Liberty Spirits distillery on Central Avenue from Mike Robinette, who will continue distilling and operating a tasting room in a nearby building.

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Mike Dranschak stands by the still inside White Dog Distilling Company on Central Avenue in Middletown. (Nick Graham)

The business will distill its own craft vodka, rum, gin, moonshine, whiskey, bourbon and blue agave, all of them with local flavors and ingredients, Dranschak previously told the Journal-News.

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It also will serve craft beers and food and include televisions, making it “a little sports bar.”

The look of the bar has been changed and was being reconfigured and expanded to accommodate as many as 50 people, up from 15.

The bar’s White Dog moniker comes from a distillate by the same name, a spirit that goes into the barrel for aging, as well as the Dranschak’s white Peekapoo dog, who is a part of the bar’s logo.

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