We started as home brewers. We remember the pride of being able to place a pint of really good beer in front of a friend (or acquaintance, or stranger); to see the widening of the eyes as they tasted how good it was; and to be able to say “We made that.”
In 2010, to take a break from our active and busy lives, we took a class on distilling one weekend in Geneva, NY. What began as fun became a mild obsession, and now has become a business that we are building with our hands to make the best spirits we possibly can.
We are asked all the time about the name we chose for the distillery. Some, with a limited understanding of geography, think the Appalachian Mountains are only in the south. In fact, they stretch from Georgia to Maine and beyond, and our beloved Green Mountains form part of the backbone of one of the northernmost reaches of the range.
Here in Vermont, a ‘gap’ is a mountain pass that runs generally east to west, and a ‘gulf’ is a mountain pass that runs north to south. Appalachian Gap, our namesake, is on Vermont Route 17, the highest point on the road that runs between Bristol and the Champlain Valley and Waitsfield in the Mad River Valley.
The AppGap Team
Founder, Distiller, Chief Palate Officer
Lars is a classic autodidact, with a resume that includes careers as a chef, as a residential contractor, as a software developer, and as an architectural consultant. Starting a distillery seemed like the obvious next step.
Founder, Distiller, Lab Mom, Quality Maven
Chuck was a biochemist for years, then became lead developer for enterprise software that is currently in use on five continents. With that solid background, why not throw caution to the wind and start a distillery next?
Distiller, Brand Evangelist, Resident Poet
Taylor is a poet, a teacher, a husband, a father, and a lover of music, among many other things. “The sportos, the motorheads, geeks, […], wasteoids, dweebies […] — they all adore him. They all think he’s a righteous dude.”
Distiller, Brand Evangelist, Rye Whisperer
Chris had a long and storied bartending career across New England until he landed in Vermont. Before that, working in the fishing industry in Maine taught him the value of hard work… the importance of coffee brandy.
Support System, Voice of Reason
Robin has somehow managed to put up with Lars and his crazy ideas for over thirty years, raising four wonderful children amongst the chaos. She helps when and where she is needed, and is the voice of reason and calm.