The Chattanooga Whiskey Company has begun construction on a larger production distillery in the former Newton Chevrolet property at the corner of MLK Boulevard and Riverfront Parkway near the Tennessee River.
Once fully operational, the Riverfront Parkway facility will be capable of producing upwards of 14 (53-gallon) barrels per day, making it one of the largest craft bourbon whiskey producers in Tennessee, officials said.
In 2013, the company became known for changing statewide laws to make distilling legal again in Hamilton County with its successful “Vote Whiskey” campaign. In March of 2015, the company opened a micro-distillery experience called the Tennessee Stillhouse, which was the first legal distillery in Chattanooga in 100 years.
Officials said, "Since then, demand for their award-winning 1816 bourbon has grown and greatly exceeded the company’s production capacity."
“The beginning of our distillery construction marks yet another milestone in our company’s history,” said Grant McCracken, head distiller for Chattanooga Whiskey. “For over a year now, we've been developing our very own style of Chattanooga Whiskey at our micro-distillery on Market Street, one barrel at a time. Of the dozens of recipes developed on our 100-gallon system, some of these bourbons and whiskies will graduate to our 2,700 gallon system on Riverfront Parkway and will go forward, proudly representing the Chattanooga Whiskey name.
"These recipes will utilize both traditional and nontraditional techniques and ingredients, always in the pursuit of making the best whiskey possible. We can’t wait to fire up the new system in 2017.”
The current structure is approximately 46,000 square feet and has room to house over 4,000 (53-gallon) aging barrels of bourbon whiskey at one time. Plans also include over 10,000 square feet of production space, over 2,000 square feet of office space where Chattanooga Whiskey will be headquartered, and over 4,000 square feet of future event space.
“Chattanooga Whiskey is excited about the opportunity to continue building local, high quality manufacturing in Chattanooga’s downtown,” said company founder and CEO Tim Piersant. “This additional location will provide us with the capacity to expand beyond our current three markets, building Chattanooga Whiskey into a more nationally recognized premium bourbon producer from Tennessee.”
The building is owned by Lamp Post Properties. Thomas Palmer/Cogent Studio is the architect and EMJ is the contractor.
The company’s 5,000-square-foot Tennessee Stillhouse micro-distillery, located at 1439 Market St. across from the Chattanooga Choo Choo, will continue to serve as the brand’s research and development distillery and tourist destination. The micro-distillery offers tours, tastings, and retail seven days a week.
In its first year it attracted nearly 20,000 visitors and became one of the Southside’s most popular tourist destinations featured in Southern Living’s “50 Best Places in the South”.