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New craft distillery set to open on Greenwood’s undeveloped east side

GREENWOOD, Ind. — There’s a good chance you’ve heard of or visited one of the Indy area’s many craft breweries.

But a new type of business is growing: craft distilleries, and there’s a new one set to be built in Greenwood this year.

It’s called Dragon Rock Distillery, and the company is planning a multi-million dollar project in Greenwood.

The development is also getting tax dollars from the city because of its location.

Driving east from I-65 at the Main Street Greenwood exit, you find field after field, many with “available for purchase” signs.

But a 12 acre lot about half a mile from the interstate, on the south side of Main Street, is now spoken for.

“We really feel that the urban sprawl is heading this way and there’s a real need for a business of this type,” Dragon Rock Distillery CEO Dave Hunter said.

Dragon Rock Distillery is set to begin construction on a new $7 to $8 million development.

“We’ll actually produce our own beer and different spirits,” he said.

Some of the property will become a restaurant, brewery and distillery complex.

But Hunter said the building will just be one part of the agri-tourism destination.

“We’re actually going to grow on this six acres wheat that will go into make our gin and vodkas. We’re going to grow corn that’ll be the vast part of our bourbons and whiskeys, and we’re going to grow rye grain which will go into make our own rye whiskey,” he said.

Hunter wants the products consumed and purchased here to be 100 percent local.

“What we can’t grow ourselves, we want to buy right here in Indiana,” he said.

And to make this a reality, the city’s redevelopment commission has agreed to help financially.

“We’ve committed $170,000 toward infrastructure — like roads, sidewalks, improvements — to help get this new establishment up and going,” RDC President Brent Tilson said.

Tilson is optimistic about Dragon Rock ushering in a new wave of development east of I-65.

“We’re very excited to see that side start to grow and expand,” he said.

Eventually the location will employ about 50 people.

Construction will most likely begin late this year or early next year.