We are conjuring a time when spirits roamed cobblestone alleys lit by flickering gas lanterns; an era when intoxicants were being concocted on homemade copper stills hidden behind secret doors. Here, Dr. Tumblety still travels by horse and carriage peddling his elixirs and patent medicines. This is our world; a world Inspired by Spirits.
We are looking to the past to build our future. We are excited to have you with us on this curious journey; a journey we believe Pittsburgh deserves. Thank you!
Inspired by Spirits provides guests with an opportunity to step back in time. We have 5,000 sq. feet of connected space that currently includes Dr. Tumblety's Time Inspired Specialty Shop (Phase 01), where curious guests will find hats & fragrance, tonics & trinkets, grooming & cosmetics, cures & curiosities, novels & novelties, oils & elixirs, vintage goods, local artisans, spiritual charms & apothecary products. Dr. Tumblety traveled the world in his horse-drawn carriage led by 2 greyhounds. He was impeccably well-dressed while selling and collecting his high-quality goods & patent medicines (mostly made with alcohol). We have conjured his spirit and his apothecary for everyone to enjoy.
Phase 01 of our model consists of Dr. Tumblety's Time Inspired Specialty Shop.
Phase 02: The Storyville Lounge at Dr Tumblety’s
Savvy guests may walk to the back of the shop and pass through a doorway, initially concealed by a custom-built bookcase, and into our mysterious Storyville-themed lounge for an historic cocktail or private event. The ladies of New Orleans's infamous red-light district of the early 1900s haunt the burgundy walls, their spirits seemingly trapped inside golden frames. Alongside regular tasting hours, which will of course strongly feature flights and libations made with our own spirits, our PA distillers' license allows for us to serve any beer, wine, or spirit made in the state of PA. Our guests can rest assured there will always be plenty of boozy options to choose from. Whether attending a private event, hoping to enjoy some live blues or jazz music, or craving one of Jaimee’s expertly-crafted Sazerac cocktails, guests will be sure to enjoy our particular brand of turn-of-the-century ambiance. Dr. Tumblety, was, after all, a prime suspect in the Jack the Ripper murders of 1888, and we like to think he would have spent some time here.
Come through the secret passageway to our haunted lounge.
Phase 03: The Inspired by Spirits Distillery
While enjoying an apple brandy in our Storyville Lounge, the shrewd patron may notice Jaimee disappearing through a doorway at the back of the bar. On the other side of the wall is our Inspired by Spirits Distillery, where another group of guests has entered through an alternate portal for a distillery tour. These fine folks will be meeting our copper still craftsman and master distiller, Mike Miles, who is likely to be operating his own hand-made 100-gallon still, and will always be happy to answer any and all questions about his processes as well as his products. Within the hour, our guests are likely to be finishing up their house-made spirit flights at the prohibition-style tasting bar. If they’re not heading out with their very own bottle of Inspired by Spirits Gin, they’re likely to be stopping off at Dr. Tumblety’s for a curious keepsake. Some will be placing orders for one of Mike's 6-gallon copper stills for their homes, and others will be signing up for one of Mike’s distilling courses. Options are vast and possibilities are many. Only one thing is for certain: So long as we have our druthers, every guest will leave feeling at ease, satiated, and inspired.
Disappear into the lounge and enjoy a spirit conjured in a copper still, hand-made by Mike.
$25,000 - Lounge furniture & build-out
$75,000 - Distillery furniture & build-out
$15,000 - Operations (payroll, utilities, rent)
$10,000 - Marketing (social media, web, digital)
$25,000 - Lawyer, distillers license & architect fees
Since June 2019, we have been operating as Dr. Tumblety's retail shop only, which we consider phase 01 of our business. Our plan, however, has always included 3 phases to reach our ultimate goal.
The items we listed are the required elements that we need in order to execute phases 02 and 03 of our plan. Funding to purchase these items would allow us to build our Storyville Lounge & Spirits Distillery while also maintaining Dr. Tumblety's. We already have the spaces leased, & they are all physically connected, creating the labyrinth world that we call Inspired by Spirits.
After receiving funding and building out the Storyville Lounge & Distillery, we will have at least 6 revenue streams: retail sales, bottle sales, cocktails, tours, private events, & copper still sales.
We can't wait for you to visit us!
Jesse conceived the name "Inspired by Spirits" almost a decade ago as a lifestyle brand based on a love of history, the paranormal, historic cocktails, travel, and a nostalgic yearning for escape. It eventually became an Instagram travel blog for Jesse and his soon-to-be wife, Amanda. The couple would document their adventures, and write about the stories & cocktails they would discover in historic towns, bars, and hotels, with a particular fondness for New Orleans, LA, which quickly became their home away from home. They were married in 2016, with an elaborate prohibition-themed wedding in New Orleans on haunted grounds, complete with fedoras, flappers, live Nola jazz, a psychic medium, a second line parade, a feature film, and Mike’s less-than-lawful moonshine. It was at this voodoo-infused wedding where Jesse and Mike decided that it was time to follow their natural course and create something unique to the Spirit world. Shortly thereafter, Jesse & Amanda took a honeymoon to London, Paris & Rome, which served to further develop the Old World element of the eventual brand. The wedding, quite literally, became the launchpad for Inspired by Spirits LLC.
After the seed was planted and cultivated for 2 years, Inspired by Spirits Distilling Co. was formed in February 2019. History, travel, hats & fragrance led to the conception of Dr. Tumblety's, A Time-Inspired Specialty Shop, which is the retail component of Inspired by Spirits LLC. Dr. Francis Tumblety was a quack doctor who opened an apothecary shop in Pittsburgh during the 1860s, so he was the perfect leading man for this first phase. Tumblety was also a prime American suspect in the Jack the Ripper case, satisfying our infatuation with all things paranormal and supernatural.
The spirit of the Crescent City, their historic cocktails & the infamous red-light district conjured up Phase 02 of the company, which will be a Storyville, New Orleans-themed lounge. We intend on hosting private events, crafting historic & creative libations, & showcasing live entertainment.
Of course, phase 03 will be the Inspired by Spirits Distillery, designed to incorporate a pre-prohibition world where supernatural curiosity collided with new technology and a time when folks hid their distilleries behind secret doors to avoid paying liquor taxes. (While our intention is to remain true to history, we fully intend on paying our taxes ;)
The inspirational launchpad for Inspired by Spirits was Jesse and Amanda's prohibition-themed wedding in New Orleans.
We would like our retail shop, Dr. Tumblety's, to continue to grow its audience and increase sales by 25% each year based on organic word of mouth & social media presence.
We would like our Victorian Storyville Lounge (phase 02) to be finished by the Fall of 2021, and we would like to be distilling & serving our own legal spirits by the end of 2021.
By the end of 2022, we would like our entire distillery to be complete, with private events booked every week, and plans for a second retail and satellite location.
By the end of 2023, we plan to have 10-15 full-time staff members.
We would like our retail shop, Dr. Tumblety’s, to continue to grow its audience and increase sales by 25% each year based on organic word of mouth & social media presence.
What Makes Us Stand Out
The skill sets of Jesse and Mike, the founding partners, opens up a world of possibilities, & cuts out lots of unnecessary costs. Jesse's award-winning background in branding & marketing has allowed the company to hit the ground running with an exceptional brand & website complete with e-commerce, while Mike's craftsmanship allows the company to bring any vision to life at almost zero cost.
Example: Jesse dreams up a secret bookcase door, & Mike builds a secret bookcase door. Simple.
Inspired by Spirits will also be the only distillery that handcrafts its own copper stills from scratch. We have built a 100-gallon still for our distillery so far, and we are selling smaller versions to local and online customers. We currently have 6-gallon and 30-gallon stills available for purchase, with options to customize. We will also be the only distillery that designs its own logos and labels from scratch, which saves tens of thousands in design agency costs.
Inspired by Spirits is owned and operated by natives of small Pittsburgh neighborhoods including Allentown, Beltzhoover, and Knoxville, all of which are parts of the tapestry making up the city’s historic Hilltop. That said, the location choice for Inspired by Spirits was not an accident – the Hilltop’s unique and historical geography makes for very convenient proximity to the attractions boasted by downtown, Mount Washington, Southside, and the South Hills.
Jesse is a member of the Allentown board of directors and maintains a grasp of the neighborhood news. Much of his family still resides in Allentown, including his mom. He hopes to help to continue to improve and maximize the potential of the business district & residential living in the area.
Co-owner Mike creates the unique copper stills.
We are located at 753 E Warrington Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15210. Born and raised in this neighborhood, we are so proud to grow our business here in Allentown. We share the main drag of our neighborhood with other amazing local businesses, as well as the Pittsburgh T. Visitors come from all over Pittsburgh and beyond to enjoy the authentic ambiance of our community.
Allentown is the best-kept secret of Pittsburgh.
About the Owners
I am a product of the 80s, born from working-class, creative DNA in the Allentown neighborhood of Pittsburgh. My mother was a part-time hairstylist & provided a solid foundation for discipline, while my father was a union foreman & gravedigger who encouraged wordplay, music, individuality & athletics (to stay busy & out of trouble). I am the middle child, between 2 talented & beautiful sisters.
Since a young age, I have been independently active in the worlds of music, sports, art, commercial design & retail. As an indie musician, songwriter, producer & recording artist, I have released 6 full-length albums since 2003 & headlined stages across Western PA with my band, Jesse Mader & The Urban Rock Project. As a visual artist & designer, I became a founding partner of the multiple award-winning design agency, ocreations llc in 2007 after receiving a bachelor's degree from the Art Institute of Pittsburgh in 2006 (RIP AIP).
After years of maneuvering through a changing music industry, a devalued design industry, & executing other people's dreams, I started paying more attention to the itch to build a world of my own. A world that truly inspired me & tapped into all of the things that have truly inspired me since I was very young. Those things are history, haunts, time travel, & escape.
In 2014, I reunited with Amanda Rok, my kindred spirit & soul mate since we met in 2002. In those years leading up to marriage, we hunted ghosts in Gettysburg, sipped Seelbach cocktails & over 50 bourbons in Louisville, sipped Ramos Gin Fizzes in the French Quarter & explored our shared vision of reincarnation. We were playfully convinced that we must have existed in a previous century due to our infatuation with the aesthetic and texture of the Victorian Era through the Roaring 20s. During this time, my good friend and long-time creative collaborator, Mike, was coincidentally experimenting with building copper stills & making moonshine whisky. I sipped his unaged brandy for the first time and I was blown away.
Amanda & I got married in 2016, and our elaborate, prohibition-themed wedding in New Orleans became the inspirational launchpad for Inspired by Spirits LLC. The wedding was very wet with Mike's authentic moonshine. When Mike & I sat by the bayou with our ties and our inhibitions loosened, we joked, "Ay, man... we have to do this for real. Let's make this a business."
The rest is history... we were truly Inspired by Spirits™
I was born and raised in Pittsburgh’s Overbrook neighborhood with 3 younger brothers and a single mother. I started doing roofing when I was 12 with my uncles who were in the trade as well. I would work summers and weekends to chip in around the house and help with the bills. I went to Carrick high school where I furthered my knowledge in the construction field. Shortly after high school, I started my own roofing business 'Miles Construction' where I’ve been owner and operator since 2010.
Fast forward to 2015: I was introduced to moonshine for the first time when my wife’s uncle had made some with a few friends and gave me half of a jar to try. I took that half jar trout fishing with me that year and 3 of my buddies and I had a great night, to say the least. The following year, I asked my wife’s uncle if he could make me another jar for the annual trout fishing trip and was disappointed when he said they were not making it anymore. That was the moment I decided to give it a try myself. Not knowing at the time it was illegal, I built my first still out of a 5-gallon stockpot, a Home Depot bucket, and a 20’ long piece of 1/2 inch copper pipe. It was rough looking but it worked, and to my surprise, it turned out a pretty good shine, so good that friends started to ask about it.
Though I never sold any, I would hand it out for people to try. Eventually, my friend and now business partner Jesse asked if I could make some for his prohibition-themed wedding that was taking place in New Orleans. I don’t think either of us knew at the time that it would be the precursor to what we are doing today, but here we are!
I have since realized that what I was doing was technically not legal, so we decided to try and go legit. That decision opened up a whole new world for us -- one where we can legitimately own and operate a retail shop, event space, and distillery. And if you thought we would stop there you were wrong – I am now building copper stills on a more professional level, and selling those will continue to be a lucrative part of this adventure as well. The sky is the limit with the level of creativity and technical ability we bring to the table. We look forward to working with all of you on this.
We have conjured the spirit of Dr. Tumblety for all customers to enjoy.
Inspired by Spirits LLC
Doing Business As
Inspired by Spirits
|Build out and operations|
$30,000 - $150,000
Monthly, disbursed to investors quarterly
6 months interest only + 54 months fully amortizing
Blanket lien on assets of company
Honeycomb Portal LLC
Your Earnings Potential
If you choose to invest, you will make a one-time investment via ACH that will be transferred to a secure escrow account. If the campaign successfully reaches its target, the funds will be distributed to Inspired by Spirits LLC.
For more information on the mechanics of Honeycomb’s crowd investing platform, please review our Education Materials
|Investment Amount||One-Time Fee||
Return: Interest-Only Period*
Return: Amortization Period*
|Potential Total Repayment*|
Your ongoing responsibilities from investing are very limited. Over the life of the loan, you will receive a yearly 1099-INT, which is a simple tax document similar to what you receive for most savings accounts.*Individual payments may vary slightly based on rounding. Potential repayments include principal and interest; they do not include the one-time fee which is assessed when you make your investment. These amounts are calculated as a hybrid interest-only + amortizing loan, which means that there is a specified interest-only period followed by an amortization period. There are no prepayment penalties and Inspired by Spirits LLC may pay down their loan early, which may impact your earnings potential. Please note: returns are not guaranteed and investors could lose some or all of their investment.
Inspired by Spirits LLC pays as agreed. You will receive quarterly payments directly into your bank account. In the event of a default, you will be contacted by the administrative agent to manage the collections process on the investors' behalf.
How Honeycomb is Compensated
Honeycomb charges Inspired by Spirits LLC a $250 posting fee and an 6-0% - 8.0% loan origination fee on the total amount funded.
Additionally, to cover expenses associated with each investment, Honeycomb charges a 2.85% investment fee capped at $37.25 per investor.
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