Crafting Success

Inside the World of Fall River Brewing…

When Fall River Brewing relocated from its cramped Intermountain facility to an expansive warehouse on Eastside Road in Redding, its owners had no idea it was the start of a social sensation.

While the move in 2017 allowed the craft brewer to ramp up production, it also paved the way for an on-site tasting room that has become an extremely popular gathering spot. As gleaming stainless steel fermenting tanks stand guard, the warehouse now routinely hosts line-dancing classes, trivia nights, bingo games, live music and other events.

“It certainly makes us proud of the community that surrounds us,” says Amanda Hutchings, Fall River’s vice-president and co-owner with her husband, John. “It’s sort of a destination place now. What we love about it is that it’s a community gathering space. We’ve got families in here; kids can play at the arcade. It’s kind of a one-stop spot for everybody.”

Gandalf Radie, works with a beer keg. Photo courtesy of Fall River Brewing Brewery.

Hutchings says she’s gratified when the warehouse-turned-pub becomes a spot for celebrating birthdays, anniversaries, graduations and other big milestones. With its relaxed vibe – well-behaved dogs and outside food are welcome and cornhole games are a regular feature – the brewery has proven to be a comfortable place for friends to gather to enjoy a beer and chat.

Fall River’s brewery has become a popular hangout in west Redding. Photo courtesy of Fall River Brewing Brewery.

In the competitive craft brewing industry, Fall River has become the little engine that could as it methodically develops innovative styles of ales, stouts, lagers and hard seltzers while gradually expanding distribution west to the coast, north to the Oregon border and south to Monterey and Stockton.

“We’re still pretty regionally focused compared to other craft brewers. The other, bigger ones are seeing a decrease in their sales while ours has seen a small but incremental growth in sales. We’re trying to stay regionally focused,” Hutchings says.

Fall River’s brewery dog-friendly policies are appreciated by Stan Williamson and his companion, Grace.
Photo by Jon Lewis.

To put the brewery’s production into context, Hutchings says Fall River sent 4 million pints of beer out the doors in 2023. Not bad for a business that started in the Hutchings’s garage in 2011.

The industry has taken notice, too. At the super-competitive California State Fair Commercial Craft Brew Competition, Fall River has twice won gold medals for its Pittville Porter and a gold for Single Track Obsession, a beer brewed in collaboration with the Redding Trail Alliance. Its Kilty Pleasure Scottish Ale picked up a bronze at the 2023 Best of Craft Beer Awards and its Sherbet Drip Sour won a gold at the 2022 Great American Beer Festival. Fall River’s flagship, Hexagenia IPA (named after Fall River’s prodigious mayfly hatch), was voted one of the top 100 IPAs in America.

Brandon Keys and Olivia Marmolejo enjoy a pint. Photo courtesy of Fall River Brewing Brewery.

Asked what the secret to Fall River’s success has been, Hutchings did not hesitate: “We hired a great staff. Our production team, we have people with great experience working at great breweries. On the flip side, we have people with no experience who are hard workers and get the job done. For the tasting room folks, whenever we onboard someone, we tell them working at the tasting room is like inviting someone into our own living room. We want them to be comfortable and have a great experience.

“We have a good product, but also a good team to serve it.”•

Fall River Brewing Brewery • (530) 945-2337 4001 Eastside Road, Redding
Taphouse • (530) 605-0230
1030 E. Cypress Ave., Suite D, Redding

About Jon Lewis

Jon Lewis is a Redding-based writer with 37 years of experience. A longtime San Francisco Giants fan, his interests include golf, fishing and sharing stories about people, places and things. He can be reached at [email protected]

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