Meet the owners
Royall Ferguson (left) has been an insurance broker for Ferguson Insurance for over 25 years. He holds a degree in Finance and an MBA in Finance from Old Dominion University. Royall also holds the following insurance industry designations: CPCU, ARM, CRM, ARe, ARM-P and LUTCF. He has been a contract Risk Management consultant for York Risk Services and is a member in other business ventures. In 2019, Royall earned the Executive Bourbon Steward Award from Kentucky’s Stave and Thief Society.
David Emmons (right) earned his business degree from the University of Mississippi and enlisted in the Navy shortly thereafter. He spent 25 years with the Naval Special Warfare Teams on the East Coast where he attained the rank of Master Chief and has served his country with honor. Dave is classified as a Service-Disabled Veteran from the VA. Since his retirement, Dave has spent time as an operations consultant to the oil industry while working for Check Six.
Both Royall and David are members of the American Distilling Institute and have been distilling spirits for the last 10 years.
WHERE IT ALL BEGAN
Royall Ferguson and David Emmons have been enjoying the smooth flavors and complexities of the spirits for over 40 years. Royall grew up in Lynchburg, VA, where most people knew “someone” who was making whiskey in the woods or on their farm- where fresh apples and peaches were plentiful. David grew up in Mississippi in an area rich in moonshine history.
In 2015, each one had purchased almost identical 26 gallon stills and were experimenting with different mash bills and grains in search of a product that would be smooth and rich in flavor. In 2016, while they were volunteering with the Norfolk Greek Festival and enjoying a Greek Gyro, they discussed their “moonshine” making skills. They also were trading samples they created with their stills.
In 2017, they again mentioned joining their efforts into making spirits that they both enjoyed, especially, taking the good flavors from spirits that were their favorites. “We were discussing starting a distillery that would showcase Virginia’s grain that grew in it’s nutrient rich soil.”
They decided to give it a try since the spirits they were making was as good or better than the store-bought spirits. Dave had offered a small warehouse he owned in an area of Chesapeake called Deep Creek, where they could hone their distillery skills.
Between 2015 and now, they have both read almost every book, magazine, and article they could find on their new craft business. Deep Creek Distilling was officially incorporated in November 2018 and they received their Distillery Plant license in March 2019, which allowed them to legally produce spirits. They received their ABC (Alcohol Beverage Control) license in April 2019 and their license to sell to the public in April 2021. They are the first licensed legal distillery in the city of Chesapeake since prohibition.
“We have never cut corners in making our spirits and we go to painstaking efforts to find the very best grains and malts (all Virginia made). We know that in order to get the best tasting spirits, we need to take our time and do things the old fashioned way….the right way!”
Our First Still
Dave and Royall, not knowing each others interests, both purchased almost identical 26 gallon stills.
May – 2015
THE GYRO THAT STARTED IT ALL
While volunteering and making gyros at the Norfolk Greek Festival, Dave and Royall were discussing their “moonshine” making skills.
March – 2016
Dave and Royall began crafting their recipes, selecting their grains by hand, searching for the perfect flavor profile.
November – 2017
Dave and Royall start talking seriously about going in business together and coming up with a plan.
November – 2018
Deep Creek Distilling is Born
Deep Creek Distilling was officially incorporated in 2018. We set up shop in a small warehouse in Chesapeake, Virginia in an area called Deep Creek.
2018 – 2019
License to Operate
We received license to operate from Virginia’s ABC (Alcoholic Beverage Control) Authority. The distillery is the first licensed legal distillery in Chesapeake since prohibition.