Issue 30

The Story of Tito’s Vodka

The Story of Tito’s Vodka

Hi. I’m Tito Beveridge and I’m the founder and owner of Tito’s Handmade Vodka. I’m from San Antonio, Texas. I went to Vanderbilt for a year, then to UT (University of Texas at Austin). I graduated with degrees in geology and geophysics. I got into the oil and gas business and did that in Texas, then down in Venezuela and Colombia where I ran heli-portable dynamite seismic crews. When I came back to Texas, I started a drilling company in Houston, got tired of chasing the buck and decided to move back to Austin.

I did groundwater geology there, got into the mortgage business and it was when I was in the mortgage business that I started making flavored vodka for my friends for Christmas presents.When rates went up a couple points in the mortgage business, I started going to liquor stores and asking if they’d buy my flavored vodkas. They said “No, go look at all the dust on the shoulders of those bottles there”. Then they said that if I could make it where it was smooth, where you could drink it straight, then I might have something.

I tried to get some financing a couple of times and it didn’t work out because they said I’d never get my permits; There’d never been a legal distillery in Texas and they said I’d never get a distributor. So, I ended up just taking the money I’d saved up while working overseas and I racked up 19 credit cards to the tune of about $88,000. I built a one-man distillery, a production still and just got myself into business. I’d go out, make it, sell it, come back and make some more. I was sleeping next to the still and you know, just kind of boot-strapped it up.

At one point we received a phone call to come to the World Spirits Competition. I was fixing a boiler, so I just sent a couple bottles there. We ended up getting the double gold medal – the unanimous judge’s choice – and that was up against 72 vodkas from around the world including flavored vodkas. That helped spur things along.

I appreciate ya’ll supporting Tito’s Handmade Vodka. It’s really been a dream come true for me and it’s really due to all the word of mouth that we’ve had. It’s all pretty much just been from people going into liquor stores or bars and asking for it. So if you are in a bar and they don’t have it, ask to speak to the bar manager. Our distributors are on our website at Thank you very much.

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