Years of hard work are about to pay off with the opening of a small distillery in Tioga County.

Joseph and Michelle Alig are working to put the finishing touches on the new business which will be housed in a large barn off Route 434 in Apalachin.

In an interview for WNBF Radio's Binghamton Now program, Alig noted the operation had previously secured its federal license. But the needed state license wasn't received until January 2.

Alig said it's taken longer to prepare the site and to tackle all of the other things needed to get the distillery to the point where production of whiskey can finally start.

Alig is a teacher in the Union-Endicott School District. His hobby of making whiskey at home for several years ultimately led him to the decision to open the craft distillery.

This weekend, Alig expects to begin fermenting the distillery's first mash. He said it will be a few weeks before enough whiskey can be produced so the tasting room can be opened to the public.

The appearance of the barn will be changing back to a more-traditional red in the weeks ahead when warming temperatures allow exterior painting to be completed.

VIEW the future Waterman's Distillery in this WNBF News photo gallery.

LISTEN to the Binghamton Now interview with Joseph Alig on the upcoming opening of Waterman's Distillery.

Contact WNBF News reporter Bob Joseph:

For breaking news and updates on developing stories, follow @BinghamtonNow on Twitter.