Citing Minnesota's "restrictive liquor laws," Tattersall Distilling announced Thursday that it will open a destination distillery and a second production facility this fall, in River Falls, Wis.
"We've been on the hunt for a second location for over two years," said Jon Kreidler, Tattersall's founder and chief officer. "Because of Minnesota's restrictive liquor laws, to maintain our presence in Minneapolis, we were forced to look outside of the state's borders. To stay as close as possible, we landed on River Falls and couldn't be more excited."
The popular distillery started in 2015 with two gins, a vodka and aquavit.
Within a month of opening the northeast Minneapolis location, the distillery bought more equipment and has expanded three times in less than six years. Tattersall now produces more than 30 varieties of spirits and liqueurs, distributed in 30 states.
The need to expand yet again had them looking for more space, and they started in Minnesota.
"That was our hope and goal," Kreidler said. But the search soon shifted to adjacent states. "We are continuing to grow and outgrow, but Minnesota's laws aren't growing with us."
Minnesota's liquor laws cap microdistilleries' production at 40,000 proof gallons if they have a cocktail room or want to sell directly to consumers. (Tattersall was on track to exceed the cap in 2019.) The law also limits daily on-site sales. A multiyear effort by the Minnesota Distillers Guild, which includes Tattersall, to change the laws has been unsuccessful.
The new 75,000-square-foot facility in River Falls, which will handle the bulk of Tattersall's production, will give the company room to grow both their capacity and brand. It is more than twice the size of the Minneapolis operation and, unlike Minnesota, Wisconsin has no production restrictions or limits on what they can sell to customers.
Among the distillery's features: an on-site restaurant and cocktail bar; a retail shop with a tasting bar, classes and tours; an amphitheater for weddings, festivals and concerts; a grand ballroom; an enlarged barrel room; and an outdoor patio with fire pits and lawn games.
Located on the outskirts of River Falls at the site of a closed Shopko, the new Tattersall will open this fall, but Kreidler said spirits production should start before then. Management will move over a few key positions, like head distiller, and more than 100 local jobs will be filled.
Fans of the northeast Minneapolis cocktail room needn't worry — Tattersall will reopen in June with expanded seating to ensure safe social distancing and a few more bells and whistles, including hosted seating and online reservations. A smaller production facility will remain to supply the cocktail room, which has been closed since the start of the pandemic.
With the move to bigger digs, where will the official Tattersall headquarters be?
"We haven't decided that yet," said Kreidler. "But Minneapolis will always be the heart and soul of Tattersall."