Templeton Rye opens Iowa distillery

TEMPLETON, Iowa--  Templeton Rye's now officially made in the community where it all started.

Tuesday, Templeton Rye Spirits hosted a grand opening event celebrating the opening of their new 34,500 square-foot distillery.  It's a $35 million project that brings 17 jobs to the area and will produce up to a half million proof gallons of rye whiskey a year.  

“This is a new, exciting chapter for our company and the community of Templeton,” said Keith Kerkhoff, a Templeton Rye co-founder whose grandfather was an area bootlegger. “We are proud to further strengthen our rich history in Templeton and provide more of The Good Stuff to our fellow Iowans and neighbors across the Midwest.”

Highlights of the distillery include stills imported from Scotland to produce the highest quality spirits and a 55,000 square-foot barrel aging warehouse that can store up to 54,000 barrels.

Templeton, Iowa residents started it all.  Back in the early 1900's, several townspeople made the bootleg rye whiskey in their basements and barns. Even during Prohibition, it is said that gangster Al Capone served Templeton Rye to his guests.

Back in 2015, the company settled lawsuits over labeling that implied the whiskey was made in Iowa, when it was actually made in Indiana.  Now for the first time since Prohibition, the rye whiskey will be made in Iowa.

“The community is excited for this production facility to open,” said Templeton Mayor Ken Behrens. “The property and distillery create significant economic impact in terms of property value and bringing jobs to the community, but it also brings a big part of our history back home.”   


Templeton Rye ribbon cutting

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