Flandreau’s new Sioux River Spirits is finding early success in some craft beers and liquors.
The Wind Street store, which will be co-managed and owned by Carleen Wild Wilson, opened July 30 and already has sold out of a craft vodka and some craft sours, which are beers that tend to taste fruity.
“Sour is a different brew. They’re so good. They’re one of the hottest things around,” Wild Wilson said of the drink that reminds her of a mix of popsicle and beer. “They’re often really robustly fruit flavored. They’re flying out the door. I’ve already reordered two sours three times, and I can’t get one of them in.”
While the store sells area craft brews, it also will have products that are always good sellers and some top-shelf items that are harder to find.
“They’re so much good stuff out there. It’s crazy,” she said. “People are more willing to try things that are a little out of the box than we give them credit. People are curious. We’re excited to be a resource.”
In addition to alcohol, the store sells specialty food items from the area, including meats from the Flandreau Meat Locker, popcorn from Gaylen’s near Wentworth and Dot’s Pretzels. They also will sell cheese, honey and syrups.
“We really believe that there are a lot of different tastes and preferences in and around the area. We want to be a store and a really fun resource for everyone,” she said. “We’re going to carry a wide variety, from rail brands to some things top shelf, things that they can’t get here sometimes. We think there is a thirst for that here.”
Wild Wilson said there will be regular tasting events, and eventually, she would like to get a beer and South Dakota wine license so a customer could sit down and have a glass of wine or a group of friends could enjoy a glass while shopping.
“We’re planning to do some music routinely. We will have a couple of small tables in there. We’ll have WiFi,” she said. “We’re not looking to be a bar at all. We just want to be able to provide an opportunity to give people an experience and taste things.”
For now, the store’s hours are 2 to 9 p.m. on Tuesdays through Thursdays and noon to 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.
Wild Wilson is renting the space for the store from Kyle Haug with Parlly Group, which is renovating the historic building. Haug previously operated a liquor store in the building but eventually closed it.
Wild Wilson and her husband, Casey Wilson, have looked at the business opportunity for a brewery in Flandreau since moving here in 2012. Eventually, that plan could materialize, but for now they are concentrating on the retail store. She also owns Bend in the River AirBnB and has a photo studio in that back of the building on Second Avenue, renting the front to another retail tenant.
There are good opportunities for entrepreneurs in Flandreau, Wild Wilson said. She most recently worked for South Dakota Magazine and will now devote her time to her businesses.
“We love Flandreau. Since we’ve moved here, I’ve just seen nothing but potential for small businesses,” she said.