head distiller/president of vices
Dave Smith is the head distiller and blender at St. George Spirits, as well as a partner in the company and its vice president.
Dave joined St. George in 2005 with a background in teaching and winemaking, having worked alongside his brother in the family business at Blacksmith Cellars.
Whiskey is truly Dave’s calling, however, and in the years since joining St. George, he has become the chief guardian and guiding hand behind our whiskey program. Dave’s meticulous approach, palate, and prodigious talents in the art of blending have shepherded the development of our Lot series of St. George Single Malt Whiskey from one release to the next—a delicate balancing act that requires keeping the spirit true to its original signature while incorporating more diverse barrels with each passing year.
Also bearing Dave's thumbprint: Baller Single Malt Whiskey, the 30th Anniversary Edition of our single malt, the 35th Anniversary Edition of our single malt, Breaking & Entering American Whiskey, and several limited whiskey releases and single-barrel selections for independent bottlers, bars, and restaurants. His accomplishments in the field have led GQ to dub him “(one of the) mad scientists of American whiskey” and have garnered widespread accolades and a world-class reputation for our whiskey program.
Beyond the world of whiskey, Dave is an accomplished distiller with experience across St. George’s entire portfolio. Our fan-favorite St. George NOLA Coffee Liqueur arose out of a passion project inspired by Dave's own courtship over coffee with his now-wife in the city of New Orleans, and he has overseen collaborations and product development with partners such as Admiral Maltings, Atlas Bar, Faction Brewing, Lost Lantern Whiskey, and Sierra Nevada.
In recognition of his leadership and accomplishments in the field, the San Francisco Business Times has bestowed Dave with a “40 Under 40” award. In addition, Dave is a graduate of the inaugural class of the DISCUS Executive Leadership Program.
Through it all, he has never lost his passion for teaching. As the lead of our production team, Dave’s passion for sharing knowledge and care for others has helped guide and inspire the next generation of distillers.