Butte’s new distillery was the toast of the town Wednesday as it celebrated its grand opening.
Headframe Spirits, located at 25 S. Montana, welcomed customers to a taste of four different liquors distilled on premises– the first legal hooch made in the Mining City in a long time.
Owners John and Courtney McKee are currently offering a whiskey, whiskey liqueur, vodka and gin. Another whiskey, named Destroying Angel after the mine, is expected to come online soon.
The business is open from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday and from noon until 5 p.m. on Sunday. It must close by 8 p.m. to comply with state regulations.
Those regulations also tie the McKee’s to serving customers only two ounces per person per day, just one drink for most cocktail recipes. They are allowed to sell a maximum of two bottles per person and cannot serve any alcohol not made on site.
John McKee said he expects the majority of their sales to take place outside their distillery.
“We see this as a manufacturing and distributing business first,” he said. “(The taste room), we’re not really sure what will become of it.”
McKee said he will not start shipping his wares out until after St. Patrick’s Day, once they have a few weeks to get their legs under them. But he said to expect to see the Butte-styled bottles in local bars and liquor stores across the state by the end of the month. In state stores, the liquors will cost between $22 and $25 for a 750 milliliter bottle.
McKee said for the business to be profitable, he needs to run the stills about 10 days per month. They have the capacity to do much more than that if the demand is high enough, he said.
For a full story, read tomorrow’s The Montana Standard.