505 Spirits is proud to be majority woman owned. Our team is like a little family, and everyone wears many hats. Our 505 Spirits Family consists of Anna Jones (Founder & CEO) and Robert Houston (Founder & Distiller) and our newest team member, James Sandison (Distillery Manager & Head Distiller).
Anna Jones and Robert Houston are the duo behind the distillery.
A psychic said they were meant to be together in a previous life until Robert drowned and Anna was unable to save him. Because of that, Anna made it really hard for Robert to catch her in this life. They met at age 25, but it took Robert until they were both 40 to convince her to marry him.
Now they live with their daughter, Eve, in the small mountaintop town of Placitas, New Mexico, far from the water. Both Anna & Robert did many different things before they got together. Anna is a sculptor and chef who worked in San Francisco, NYC and Chicago. Robert is a painter and sculptor who grew addicted to vineyards while living in Italy.
With her background in fine restaurants and catering, Anna brings her sensibility and skill in combining ingredients to develop complex and unexpected flavors. With his background in liquor retail, Robert brings his understanding of the industry and his insight into customer demand for the types of local liquor products no one else is making. With their backgrounds in the visual arts, Anna and Robert work together to design the labels, packaging and all the graphic aspects of the brand.
505 Spirits is the incarnation of what Anna and Robert have both learned and done. It’s the marriage of their love for local food, fine cuisine, wine, spirits, art and culture. It’s been a long road to this path. Please join them and see where it leads!
James Sandison | Distillery Manager
Born and raised in New Mexico, James grew up feeling at home
in both the cities and the wilderness of this beautiful state. In 2011, he
moved to Austin, TX to study theater and stumbled into the restaurant world. In the service industry, James particularly enjoyed getting to know folks responsible for making the amazing local food and drink he served. In 2019, he landed at a Texas bourbon distillery to learn the craft. Starting from the bottling line, James moved up to Head Distiller, learning the ins and outs of the distillery world along the way.
In 2023, the stars aligned for James to join the 505 Spirits team. The timing couldn’t have been more perfect for us all when The Land of Enchantment called him back home, to be near family and the many things about New Mexico he had been missing. James immediately fit right in at the Placitas distillery, and
loves working at 505 Spirits, crafting everything by hand and having a part in the blossoming spirits industry in New Mexico. He is thrilled to live in
Corrales with his girlfriend, Stephanie and their adorable pets, Otis and
Poppie. When he’s not in the distillery, you can probably find James and Steph on a trail or curled up with a good game or movie.
Mochi & George | Distillery Dogs
It's impossible not to smile when these two cuties are around! George and Mochi work very hard chasing lizards and rabbits, howling at coyotes and patrolling the property. They love crinkly & squeaky toys, getting lots of pets, and of course, sitting for treats.