Michigan Distillery Breaks Ground on New Production Facility and Restaurant

Now for a dose of something we don’t see every day in the whiskey world: distillery news from–wait for it–Grand Rapids, Michigan!  Eastern Kille Distillery has announced a four million dollar expansion to their facility.  To be totally transparent, I had never heard of this brand until they reached out to me to share this news, but now I’m curious.  Does Traverse City Whiskey Co. have some real competition in their backyard?  If I can get my hands on some of their products I’ll be sure to update with reviews.  For now, let’s hear about the expansion from Eastern Kille Distillery.


John H.


Press Release


January 11th, 2023

Distillery Breaks Ground on New Production Facility and Restaurant

Eastern Kille Distillery is expanding to increase production and keep up with demand

GRAND RAPIDS, MICH. – Eastern Kille Distillery, established in 2014 broke ground today on a new headquarters, production facility, bar and restaurant in a suburb just north of Grand Rapids, Mich. at 7755 Childsdale Ave NE in Rockford, Mich.

The new site includes 3,980 square feet for the restaurant and 7,970 square feet for the distillery. The project is slated to cost $4.2 million and the distillery anticipates creating 15 new jobs.

“It’s exciting to watch the plans come to life,” said Steve Vander Pol, co-owner of Eastern Kille Distillery. “This facility allows us to nearly triple production and continue to expand and age our award winning barrel portfolio. We remain committed to produce and age all whiskey on site from grain, never sourcing our whiskey.”

Eastern Kille produces a wide range of spirits but focuses primarily on bourbon and rye whiskey. Leading sales for the distillery are their Michigan Straight Bourbon Whiskey and Michigan Straight Rye Whiskey.

The new distillery is set on 16 wooded acres intended to highlight the natural settings impact on whiskey production and will feature a full kitchen and extensive cocktail garden in the woods.

“The kitchen and customer experience space features incredible views into the natural setting and draws inspiration from Japanese and modern Scandinavian architecture,” shared Vander Pol.

The distillery property is bordered by the White Pine Trail, a 92 mile hiking and biking trail, and features a path through the woods connecting the trail to the outdoor cocktail garden offering customers a way to reach the distillery and interact with the local environment.

The groundbreaking comes on the heels of the September 1, 2022 opening of their newest tasting room on Wealthy Street in Grand Rapids. Their current production facility and tasting room located at 700 Ottawa in downtown Grand Rapids was sold but will be open to the public and operating through September 30, 2023.

“This expansion marks another milestone in the growth of Eastern Kille. We plan to continue our investment in West Michigan to meet the growing demand of our customer base here. across Michigan and beyond,” said Vander Pol.


Founded in 2014, Eastern Kille Distillery creates a variety of premium craft spirits and cocktails distilled and aged in small batches. Eastern Kille is Michigan’s first New York International Spirits Competition winner, taking double gold for its Michigan Rye Whiskey as well as silver for their American Dry Gin. They were the first Michigan distillery to release a Bottled in Bond Bourbon in statewide distribution and both its flagship Michigan Straight Bourbon and Bottled in Bond bourbon are available through statewide distribution.They currently operate the distillery and bar at 800 Ottawa Ave. and tasting room at 634 Wealthy St. Learn more about Eastern Kille Distillery here: https://easternkille.com/

Final thoughts…

As I mentioned in the intro, we don’t hear a lot about whiskey from Michigan; however, Traverse City Whiskey Co. is the first brand to make a splash on the Weekly Whiskey YouTube channel, if you’re interested in hearing about their products you can check out the video above, or just dive into our videos for more.  Stay tuned for more whiskey news and reviews.  Cheers!

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