Meet Aspen’s favorite new vodka, LIFT. Here, owner Lance Armstrong talks inspiration, the Aspen community and his favorite LIFT cocktail to mix up.
The vodka industry just got a whole lot more interesting thanks to the newest player in the game, LIFT vodka. Lance Armstrong, along with his good buddies and LIFT vodka partners Joe DiSalvo and Zack Neiditz, conceptualized the new spirit after several rounds of golf and a few cocktails on the final few holes of the course. This Aspen-based brand differentiates itself from other brands because it is made with water from Aspen’s very own water source. We spoke with Armstrong about this spirited chapter he is a part of.
Tell me about your journey into the spirits world and your involvement with LIFT. Truth be told, it all started at our local municipal golf course. I had played seemingly thousands of rounds with our local sheriff, Joe DiSalvo, and my good buddy Zack Neiditz. And of course we always have some cocktails in the final few holes, so one day we all looked at each other and said, ‘Hey, why don’t we make a vodka with our water?’ The rest is history.
How do you all differentiate yourselves as a brand?
Most importantly, we make our vodka with 100% Aspen water. We believe we have some of the best natural drinking water in the world, which of course is a true blessing for all of us who live here. Then we add in a very high-grade (non-GMO) corn-based distillate that, at the end of the day, produces one of, if not the, best vodkas in the world.
What aspect of making vodka do you enjoy the most?
It’s all about the team. I love working with Zack, Joey, Lauren, Cam, Avery and Hanna. We all have our lanes and strengths, and it’s been super cool to see it come together. The other thing I love is our ‘give back.’ We are truly blessed to live in this great community and have amazing water at the twist of a faucet. The reality is billions of people around the world do not have this luxury. We are proud to support water charities and organizations that are working to bring clean water to impoverished and underserved communities all over the world. A percentage of all our sales go toward helping provide clean water to those who have never experienced it.
LIFT vodka is heavily influenced by Aspen. What is your favorite part about living in this community?
Oh boy, where do I start? For starters, the school system here is incredible. I have five kids, three of which have been products of the AISD. Cannot say enough good stuff about all the faculty there. Beyond that, we live in a winter and summer wonderland—whether it’s skiing or skinning in the winter or hiking, fishing, biking or golfing in the summer. Simply put, it’s the spirit of Aspen.
Favorite LIFT cocktail?
I’m old-school. My go-to is a simple Lift and Waterloo Soda with lime. Beyond that, I love to tweak my old margarita recipe that many know as the Lance-a-Rita into a LIFT-a- Rita. As long as it has LIFT in it, you can’t lose.
What’s next for you all at LIFT? Is there expansion on the horizon?
Absolutely. We are excited about a future distribution relationship we are working on and that will significantly broaden our reach. Our plan is to start modestly here in Colorado, primarily on the front range, then expand from there.
Photography by: PHOTO COURTESY OF LIFT VODKA