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Divine Distillers moves its equipment from its Salem location to 915 N. Main St. in Independence in time for the new year.

INDEPENDENCE — When Jason and Jannell Greenwood incorporated Divine Distillers four years ago in Salem, a funny thing happened. They became a victim of their own success, quickly outgrowing each home for their distilling operations.

After starting in a cozy, 400-square-foot facility, the couple have now made their fifth move to their sixth location — a 13,000-square-foot, former seed warehouse at 915 North Main Street in Independence.

Jason said there were not a lot of choices to move operations without severely uprooting the family from their roots in Salem.

“We wanted to remain close,” Greenwood said, “somewhere that was up and coming and growing. Independence was one of our top choices. We loved it before COVID.”

All of Divine Distiller’s libations are produced from locally sourced fruits from the Willamette Valley, including brandy, rum, wine, their 1859 cider and whiskey. Only their agave spirit tequila ingredients come from outside the region.

“We had no plans to be anywhere this big for several years,” Greenwood said. “When we opened, we were really tiny. We were surprised anyone actually liked our stuff.”

He explained the coronavirus pandemic has been a mixed blessing in the last couple of years. While it destroyed their production, at the same time, they upgraded their equipment, making their products faster and better. Then they expanded to meet an unexpected public need.

“We became the second distillery in country to produce sanitizer,” Greenwood said. “We gave away $300,000 of it to the state of Oregon. It was the right thing to do.”

Produced from scratch, Divine Distillers moved its sanitizer to 30 cities throughout the state, from Salem to Tillamook and North Bend.

While all their equipment was moved to the new Independence location by the new year, Greenwood said there is plenty to do with the facility before it’s ready to reopen. They plan to set aside 2,000 to 2,500 square feet for an indoor restaurant, create outdoor seating for the restaurant and put a tasting room out front. He added the restaurant is still early in the planning stages, as he’s yet to develop a theme or menu, let alone hire a chef.

A rough timeline for reopening, Greenwood said, to “kinda, sorta” have the tasting room open as soon as February, but more likely toward the end of February. With distillery production resuming in March, a tap house ready by June and the restaurant offering meals by July.

To learn more about Divine Distillers, go to www.divinedistillers.com.

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