By Travis E. Poling | February 6, 2018 | lcnadmin | Leave a comment Three tractor-trailer rigs a day back their way through a narrow gap in the fence at Rebecca Creek Distillery to load the San Antonio-produced whiskey and vodka, just off Bulverde Road.There used to be one small truck every three months visiting the business, which has grown to be one of the largest craft distilleries in North America. Still, some things never change: An artisan German pot bubbles away to make six or seven barrels a day, seven days a week.“We’ve been at this location 6½ years and now we’re busting at the seams,” said Steve Ison, CEO and founder. “We’re now in 10 states and we’ll be in 10 more by the end of 2018.”To handle growth, the company gained $15 million in new investments from a German group for capital expansion on land with U.S. 281 frontage a few miles away. New digs mean greater production capacity, but also many activities for the visiting public and brand-supported musicians.Ison said the company finished 2017 with about 70,000 cases of Rebecca Creek Fine Texas Spirit Whiskey, Enchanted Rock Vodka, a peach variation of the spirit, and Texas Ranger Whiskey. Current projections for 2018 are about 95,000 cases, and potentially more when a still, capable of 20 barrels a day, is installed late in the year.Head distiller Brad Baldwin said big silos for the grains used to make the products and having separate stills for the vodka and whiskeys will streamline the process.The new distillery and accompanying operations are expected to take about $7.5 million to build and equip. It will quadruple production capacity up to 500,000 cases annually.The existing operation at 26605 Bulverde Road already sports a small tasting room, a dog park and an outdoor music venue, which draws about 1,200 people during the four days they’re open to the public each week.Those amenities will be even bigger at the new facility, which will have an events center with a stage, state-of-the-art sound system and lighting for indoor and outdoor concerts.The company backs many Texas country artists by playing them on their in-house and online radio station. In return, the artists require venues where they play to have Rebecca Creek’s products on hand and talk up the brand. A recording studio for those musicians and other up-and-coming artists will be part of the new complex, Ison said.Another feature is the Outlaw Country Gallery, which is dedicated to art and museum pieces related to pioneers of the country-music industry.“Our primary goal for the new distillery is to increase production, but the secondary goal is to allow visitors to experience and enjoy all that Rebecca Creek has to offer,” said Matt Appleby, vice president of national marketing, in a written statement. “We will highlight our great state’s music history, use cutting-edge technology to merge the past with the present, and provide an experience that can only be found at Rebecca Creek Distillery.”The business started with encouragement from Republic National Distribution Co. The Tito’s vodka brand out of Austin was exploding on the national scene and craft distilling was just starting to take hold, Ison said.Rebecca Creek has the fifth license to distill in Texas in modern times.The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission has issued 124 permits for the manufacture of distilled spirits, including seven inside San Antonio. Most are small players catering to a local crowd, but several have made a splash and received wider distribution.The local aspect of Rebecca Creek got the attention of San Antonio-area and Texas bars “and it helped us get going quickly,” Ison said. “But now we’re in other states, so we have to tone down the Texas angle a little bit.”That doesn’t mean they don’t still market with Texas pride. The distillery keeps Ranger fans cheering with Rebecca Creek Saloon inside Globe Life Park in Arlington, and is partnered with the San Antonio Spurs this season.