Heritage Distilling Expands to Tumwater

Fans of the Heritage Distilling Company, Washington state’s largest independently owned craft distillery, have good reason to be excited this summer as their’s newest location, in Tumwater, Washington, celebrates its first week of business. Heritage Distilling’s building is shared with South Puget Sound Community College as part of the school’s Craft Brewing & Distilling program.

“We are thrilled that Heritage Distilling is part of the new Craft District in Tumwater. Together we are joining forces with South Puget Sound Community College to be the anchor tenants in this historic venture,” said Justin Stiefel, CEO of Heritage Distilling Co. “Tumwater holds a special place in the Northwest for its history of craft beverage production. It is only fitting that a world class craft production and training facility, working with the community college, helps to revitalize this proud tradition in Tumwater using its Artesian water source. Playing on the old tagline of the historic Olympia Beer, we believe ‘it’s still the water’,” Stiefel added. 

The reserved space is over 11,000 square feet, including production, distillery tasting room, the distillery’s patented Cask Club®, private event space, retail space, and an outdoor patio overlooking the Craft District’s outdoor amphitheater, which will host live concerts and events. The new Heritage Distilling facility was designed by fi architecture of Gig Harbor, with Darrin Filand overseeing all aspects of design and implementation. 

“We especially want to thank the City of Gig Harbor and its residents who have supported us since we opened nine years ago,” said Jennifer Stiefel, President and Co-Founder of Heritage Distilling. “We are certainly not leaving Gig Harbor; retail sales will contiue at HDC’s Waterfront tasting room, even as we grow this new location in Tumwater.”
Upon its full buildout, the Craft District will feature a production brewery and tap room, winery tasting rooms, a small craft producers’ market, the community college, restaurants, retail shops, commercial office space and an outdoor amphitheater. It is located in the shadow of the old Olympia Brewing facility along I-5 and overlooks the Deschutes River. For more information, visit the HDC website or the new Tumwater location from 12-7pm daily.


a•laf•fi•a \ ah-la-fee-uh \ noun. A common greeting or valediction originating from central Togo, Benin and Nigeria. Alaffia means a state of peace, health and well-being.

One of the most successful fair-trade body-care organizations in the natural products industry is located in Thurston County. Most residents are probably not even aware of this innovative company right here in the South Sound. Most are probably also not aware of the significant, life-changing impact Alaffia is bringing to residents of West Africa.

Olowo-n’djo Tchala was born and raised in the village of Kaboli in the West African nation of Togo. There he shared a single small room with his mother and seven siblings. The boy dropped out of school in the sixth grade when his family couldn’t afford the tuition. In the years after, Tchala worked alongside his mother on her farm.

In 1996 Tchala met and fell in love with a Peace Corps volunteer, Prairie Rose Hyde, while she worked in Kaboli. After her service ended, the couple moved to the United States with a shared goal: finding a way to alleviate poverty in West Africa.

Hyde entered a graduate program at the University of California, Davis. She studied international agricultural development and ethnobotany, the scientific study of relationships between people and plants. Tchala studied English and earned a degree in Organizational Theory. Determined to make a difference in his home country, the native son, along with Hyde, created Alaffia, based in Tumwater.

Alaffia’s success is not measured simply by profit. For this innovative company, success is measured by empowerment, with the goal to alleviate poverty and encourage gender equality in Togo. Special projects, including a maternal health clinic, school construction and reforestation efforts, have made a significant impact on Togolese communities.

Doing good business has been an extremely successful model for Alaffia. The company has expanded its product lines from natural body care to hair care products and African home textiles featuring

artisan hand-stamped fabrics. Alaffia’s recipe for success is simple: “helping our communities in West Africa sustain themselves through the fair trade of their indigenous resources. The more each of us can do, the closer we are to everyone working together.”


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