SPOKANE – A local distillery is coming of age, putting a cap on the days of hand-bottling with a brand-new machine.
Dry Fly Distillery invested in an automated bottling line: its biggest expense since it opened five years ago. Distillery co-owner Don Poffenrogh said the machine will increase the business’ efficiency five-fold by bottling up to 1,800 bottles an hour.
“We’re fortunate to have more business than we can handle by hand-bottling right now,” Poffenrogh said. “This is gonna give us the ability to take care of all of our customers.”
In the past, Dry Fly Distillery hosted bi-weekly bottling parties of volunteers to help the business get its work completed. Now it won’t need the outside help, but the owners vow to still host occasional parties, limiting them to charitable causes.
For the owners, that change is bittersweet.
“We’re just growing up and it’s growing pains and we have to go through those,” Poffenrogh said. “It’s not only a financial growing pain, but it’s a change of the way we’ve done business. That’s all good for us and it’ll be great for our customers, too.”
The new machine will allow Dry Fly Distillery to roll out four new products much faster. It should be up and running within the next couple weeks, just in time for the holidays, which is the business’ busiest time of the year.