We had the good fortune of connecting with Randall D. Ordovich-Clarkson and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Randall D., every day, we about how much execution matters, but we think ideas matter as well. How did you come up with the idea for your business?
Absinthe Minded began with a poem. One day in 2017, I got tipsy on my home-made booze for the first time, and then began reading through my writings and poems. After stumbling across something that I wrote with the words “Absinthe Minded” in it, I thought, “that would make for an awesome brand-name!” Not to mention, absinthe is such an uncharted market in the spirits industry with a 95 year history of prohibition from 2014-2007 in the US. It also has a rich history among bohemian artists of the 19th and early 20th ce. So with that, I decided to hit up my best friend who I played music with for over 20 years.
I texted my homie Justin Slusher, saying, “yo, we should get a still, learn to make absinthe, and call it Absinthe Minded.” Justin immediately called back and told me he had purchased a still to make moonshine with his dad. A couple weeks later, we were learning how to distill absinthe. It took about 3 attempts to make a great batch, and when we nailed our formulation, that’s what we have been sticking to for the past several years.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Justin and I are both musicians and artists, having played music throughout Arizona for over two decades. I am also a graphic designer, working through multiple mediums. Absinthe Minded provided me with an excellent platform to make my art into a commercial reality. Being an artist and an entrepreneur isn’t easy, but at least having the ability to turn art into a boozy product makes artistic creativity all the more practical in its application. Thankfully, booze, music, and art are all extremely compatible endeavors!
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
In terms of things to do, my favorite places in Phoenix include Arcadia, Tempe, Gilbert, and Downtown/Midtown/Uptown Phoenix. If you want to killer spot to visit, I would highly recommend checking out our partnered distillery in Tempe, Adventurous Stills. If you’re into awesome artisanal grain-to-bottle whiskies, Kelly does tours every weekend and that would be a great thing to check out. Another great spot that we always recommend is Persepshen. Jason and his wife Katherine do an incredible job using local ingredients for their amazing cuisine. Also, they serve our booze, which makes for a great time. The final spot I would recommend is Hanny’s in downtown Phoenix. Awesome food and booze, and definitely make sure to check out their super creepy basement.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Kanwar Singh, our business consultant that helped us get launched. Rob Slusher who provided us with our first round of funding. Kelly Lattig at Adventurous Stills in Tempe who helps us produce our product. Konrad Zietal at Silesia Brands who helps us distribute our product throughout Arizona. Everyone else who supported our dream until this point!
Some images by Fernando Zelaya @ShootzToThrill