Growing up in Reefton, Patsy remembers the simplicity of life on the West Coast, picking fruit in the garden, riding horses, and sipping on milkshakes at the milk bar. Her love of the region has been a constant and decades later when Patsy’s work as a project manager saw her return home, she began to look for ways that she could contribute to the revitalisation of her home town. Having spent her early years living on the site of the Westland Brewery, establishing a distillery was a natural step.
Nick comes from Blackball on New Zealand’s Wild West Coast. A science graduate from the University of Otago, where he studied Botany, Nick has spent the last 5 years working in various industries including dairy, tourism, hospitality, and conservation. This unique mix of experience sees Nick well placed as Distiller at Reefton Distilling Co. Cutting short his UK O.E. to join us, Nick spent time in London and Scotland visiting household distillery names such as Glenfiddich and Dewars, where he gained valuable experience that is being put to work here at home.
CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE MANAGER
Lisa first visited Reefton while on a holiday from the North Island, and ended up staying for good. As an active member of the Reefton community, Lisa has had experience working in several management positions for local businesses, as well as being involved in local community organisations such as the St. John Cadets and the Sacred Heart School. We couldn’t be happier to have Lisa on board as Customer Experience Manager for Reefton Distilling Co.
CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE / DISTILLERY ASSISTANT
With over 30 years experience as a Chef and the owner of a successful café/bar, Shane went on to complete his Post-Graduate Diploma in Teaching and Learning (Food Technology and Outdoor Education), and has worked at High Schools in Canterbury and the West Coast, teaching hospitality and food technology. Shane is a NZQA Assessor (Hospitality Service Industry ITO) and holds the Professional Chef City and Guilds qualification.
STEFFAN AND NIGEL MCKAY
AMBASSADORS, BOTANICAL AND WATER PROSPECTORS
Steffan and Nigel are very proud of both their Scottish heritage and the culture of their home town. The twin brothers who were born and grew up in Reefton, are authorities on everything that there is to know about the area, its people, and its rich history.
Their ability as “water prospectors” has assisted in the establishment of the water sources for Reefton DistillIng Co., and their botanical knowledge has enabled us to forage for unique botanicals giving our products a distinct West Coast flavour.