Booze

Stranahan's Colorado Whiskey has been sold to an East Coast liquor distributor

Stranahan's Colorado Whiskey is not longer a Colorado-owned company.

Jess Graber, who co-founded the microdistillery with Aspen businessman George Stranahan in 2004, acknowledged today that New York-based Proximo Spirits has purchased Stranahan's. He provided no other details.

"Proximo Distillers and Stranahan's Colorado Whiskey have joined forces to facilitate the growth of the Rocky Mountains best whiskey," he wrote in a statement.

"Through combined efforts, Stranahan's will be able to increase production, distribution, and marketing. Founder Jess Graber will continue working with the company to maintain quality control and as brand ambassador. We are all very excited about the new opportunities available to Stranahan's."

Proximo is a liquor distributor that that also owns Hangar 1 vodka, Kraken Black Spiced Rum and 1800 Tequila. A Proximo executive who spoke with Westword last October said he didn't want the public or Stranahan's fans to see the company as having sold out.

"We have no intention of changing anything," the executive said. "They will stay in Colorado and they will stay where they are. We just want to make what they've done bigger, and we know a lot about building brands."

In May 2009, Stranahan's moved from the Ballpark neighborhood to the former Heavenly Daze building at 200 South Kalamath Street.

A Proximo spokesman didn't return a phone call seeking comment.

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Jonathan Shikes is a Denver native who writes about business and beer for Westword.
Contact: Jonathan Shikes