Northeast Minneapolis’s Tattersall Distilling is facing potential eviction after its landlord, JGS Management, brought the distillery to civil court on January 24 over an alleged $121,717.64 in unpaid rent, taxes, late fees, and other expenses.
JGS Management’s complaint, filed January 9, alleges that Tattersall has stopped making monthly lease payments for the last six months, from August 2023 through January 2024. It requests that the distillery be ordered to remove all its property from the premises at 1620 Central Avenue, and compensate JGS’s legal fees, plus any “further relief” the court considers to be fair.
In a statement to Kare 11 News, Tattersall representatives said that the alleged missing payments were a result of JGS Management’s IT system being “hacked,” and that they were “working with authorities” to resolve the issue.
Attorneys for JGS Management did not respond to Eater’s request for comment. The Star Tribune reports that during yesterday’s hearing, attorney Mark Thieroff pushed back against the hacking claim, saying he was “not convinced we have a relevant factual issue.” The Strib also reports that Tattersall’s attorney, Christopher Renz, said the distillery was “reluctant” to pay January rent since other payments had disappeared, but that he could give JGS a check for January rent and other fees this week. Hennepin County District Judge Christian Sande granted Renz’s request for additional time to investigate the missing payments.
In separate statement made to Eater, Tattersall’s leadership seemed to suggest that the distillery isn’t packing its bags anytime soon. “Tattersall Companies has a long tradition of being a great Minneapolis business,” the statement reads. “The recent eviction action by property owner JGS Management, LLC does not change that. At the core of that dispute is not whether payment was made, but what happened to that payment. Tattersall looks forward to getting to the bottom of that issue during the course of these proceedings, as well as continuing with its Minneapolis presence in the distillery and tap room scene.”
Tattersall founders Dan Oskey and Jon Kreidler opened the Northeast distillery and cocktail room in 2015. They grew the business to produce and sell more than 30 spirits and liqueurs across the country. In 2021, Tattersall added a second River Falls, Wisconsin facility and adjoining restaurant, citing Minnesota’s labyrinthine liquor laws, which restrict on-site sales and cap production at 40,000 proof gallons for micro distilleries that, like Tattersall, operate cocktail rooms or sell directly to customers. The River Falls location, at 75,000 square feet, was built to handle most of the distillery’s production.
In 2020, after months of organizing by staff, Tattersall became the country’s first unionized craft distillery. The eviction case may go to a court trial later this spring.