Tito

Tito’s Handmade Vodka founder and master distiller Bert “Tito” Beveridge is a true pioneer in the world of microdistilling – in fact, it’s a world he helped create.

A native Texan and brilliant entrepreneur, Tito was born in San Antonio and attended The University of Texas in Austin, where he earned degrees in Geology and Geophysics, with a minor in Math. He began his professional life as a Geophysicist, working around the globe at jobs in and out of the field, including dynamite-blasting oil reserves, sub-surface mapping, processing seismic data, analyzing ground water, and even at one time, as a mortgage banker.

A native Texan and brilliant entrepreneur, Tito was born in San Antonio and attended The University of Texas in Austin, where he earned degrees in Geology and Geophysics, with a minor in Math. He began his professional life as a Geophysicist, working around the globe at jobs in and out of the field, including dynamite-blasting oil reserves, sub-surface mapping, processing seismic data, analyzing ground water, and even at one time, as a mortgage banker.

The varied life and career experiences gave Tito a unique perspective on time, forecasting, planning, finance, and the ability to understand people from all walks of life.

In the early 1990s, Tito enjoyed infusing flavored vodka in his spare time, creating much-loved (and much-requested) batches for friends. Tito watched as microbreweries and boutique wineries began cropping up throughout the country, and astutely predicted that the next step would be to incorporate the same handcrafted principles to the spirits industry.

In a profound self-reflection exercise, Tito sat down to reassess his career and life path by drawing a line down the middle of a single sheet of paper. He defined those things he was most skilled at on one side, and added those things he felt most passionate about to the other. He immediately recognized that he was drawn to meeting new people, making and enjoying fine spirits, and had a genuine knack for selling. In a life-changing moment, Tito’s path became clear and he decided to create his own vodka company. These basic tenets – following what you love and staying true to your talents -- remain the backbone of Tito’s passionate pursuit in the highly competitive spirits industry.

 

In 1997, Tito fought to create the permit process in Texas to establish his legal right to open the state’s first distillery. Without investors, any formal training, and on a tiny budget, Tito relied on credit cards -- in the end, running up a total of 19. With the unwavering dedication of a small, handpicked staff and with friends who pitched in to help build Tito’s first distillery shack, he turned his dream into a reality. “I listened closely to the advice of those who advised me to start small, saying, ‘Try to own your hometown, then, if you do that, try to own your home state, then if you do that, try to own your home country,’” recalls Tito.Early on, Tito worked day and night in the one-room shack, cooking vodka and catching sleep sporadically. He spent his days hand-bottling vodka, screwing caps on bottles, and putting Elmer’s glue on paper labels. He would canvass Austin, meeting with local liquor stores and distributors,and taking his vodka around to parties, introducing his brand and building up a cadre of loyal followers. Tito would head home to exhausted and exhilarated; Then, he would wake up, and do it all over again.

It took the company more than eight years to turn a profit. Today, Tito’s Handmade Vodka is one of the fastest-selling and fastest-growing micro distilleries on the market and remains one of the purest spirits available.

When not walking the distillery floor and testing each batch, Tito enjoys fishing, listening to, writing and playing music, and traveling throughout Texas. However, he still counts his biggest hobby as selling vodka. Tito lives in Austin, Texas with his wife and three children.