Short Path Distillery Adds More Production (and Drinking) Space in Everett

Get ready to try a Scotch-style whiskey peated with Maine-grown fuel.

Short Path Distillery

Short Path Distillery / Photo provided

While Night Shift Brewing is putting the finishing touches on its second taproom, and Bone Up Brewing gets ready to debut their beer hall right next door, the resident spirit-maker in Everett’s budding Fermentation District is also making moves. Short Path Distillery took over an adjacent building earlier this month, and the team is planning to grow production capacity as well as the space where guests can sip it from the source.

Short Path finalized the takeover of a 2,000-square foot former metal fabrication shop on August 1, says cofounder Matthew Kurtzman. The addition is a 50 percent increase in Short Path’s overall footprint, bringing it up to 6,000-square feet. The plan is for all fermentation and storage operations to go in the new part of the building, which will free up space on their current production floor to install more copper stills, including a whiskey still.

The newly acquired space will also house Short Path’s offices, which currently take up space in the bar area. While an updated occupancy permit needs to be obtained, the Short Path team anticipates upping its capacity from 49 to 90 people, Kurtzman says.

“It will be a few months before things start to be apparent on the bar side, but you’ll see changes right now on production side,” he says.

(Looking to get your drink on at a shiny, new still-to-bar right now? Don’t forget GrandTen Distilling now serves craft cocktails, too.)

In the new production area, Short Path plans to build a walk-in cooler, which will dually help the team better control their fermentation operations, as well as allow for more efficient storage of yeasts, fresh fruits, and other mixes for the bar’s cocktails. In-house fermentation kicks off the distillation process for Short Path’s flagship rums, its apple brandy, and soon, the new whiskey.

With research and planning expected to be ramped up in 2017, Short Path intends to develop in-house mashing capabilities before it introduces its own Scotch-style whiskey.

“Scotch whiskey is the seed for this whole business,” Kurtzman says.

In 2012, along with cofounders Zachary Robinson and Jackson Hewlett, he started a Scotch club, where they would purchase bottles of high-end, single malt Scotches that were otherwise out of their individual price ranges. “As we were sitting around, drinking this delicious, old whiskey, we thought how awesome would it be to make this ourselves? That turned into a hobby, which turned into a business plan.”

Earlier this summer, the trio harvested their own peat from a bog nearby Hewlett’s family camp in northern Maine. The New England fuel is currently drying, and it will be used to add the distinctive smokiness to Short Path’s take on a peated whiskey.

Short Path recently introduced a Triple Sec as well as a gold rum among its core offerings. Both stemmed from successful limited releases as part of the company’s Community Supported Alcohol program. The team continues to experiment with seasonal spirits. There’s still time to sip the blueberry gin, flavored (and colored) with organic, Maine berries among botanicals like juniper coriander, lavender, lemongrass, and eucalyptus. They are fine-tuning a fall gin, and also plan to re-release the robust Juniper 14, a rosemary-driven gin that was the first CSA release.

With more space to control the process, expect to see even more locally fueled booze from Short Path as it kicks off its third year in Everett.

Short Path Distillery, 71 Kelvin St., Everett; 857-417-2396 or



Are you a woman who likes whiskey? Join us at Women Who Whiskey on Tuesday, September 27, at Tapestry’s Club Room. Buy tickets on Eventbrite.