They say wisdom comes with age, but sometimes a new business can surprise you! Especially during this time of uncertainty, it’s critical for businesses to stay agile. And who better to share that than a local establishment which has taken the incredibly challenging circumstances of COVID-19 and turned them into something amazing? Learn more in this month’s client spotlight with Madelyn Rohde of Citrus Grove Distillers.
Once upon a time…
The story of Citrus Grove Distillers began in 2016 when two best friends got together in hopes of opening their own bar in Claremont, California. However, after starting their journey they quickly realized that the bar scene was pretty much already covered in Claremont.
In search of new ideas, they embarked on a road trip to visit bars all up the coast until they finally made it to Montana. There, they happened upon a tiny distillery and immediately fell in love with the concept.
They brought the idea back to Claremont, and after getting the necessary permits, approached one of their daughters, Rohde, to join in the venture. With her background and passion for business, she brought the original owners’ vision to life.
Growing and Adapting
Nine months after Rohde joined the team, Citrus Grove Distillers officially opened for business. Now, less than a year after opening, the business has been forced to adapt to the circumstances of COVID-19.
Although many businesses have struggled throughout the crisis, it’s inspiring to see so much innovation from our local business community. And Citrus Grove Distillers is one of those businesses that has evolved to meet the times.
Shortly after the state issued stay at home orders, Citrus Grove Distillers shifted production to begin making hand sanitizer. With federal regulations permitting distilleries to make hand sanitizer from denatured alcohol, Rohde and her team have ramped up production to produce over 400 gallons of hand sanitizer every week. She shares,
It’s better for you, it’s American made, and it shows that we can keep going even in a time of crisis. But above all, we are so overjoyed that we’ve been able to help by donating to the small places like senior centers and daycares who really need support the most right now.
The Future is Bright
Citrus Grove Distillers plans to continue hand sanitizer production while there is still a need. However, Rohde is proud to announce that they will soon be returning to fulfill another need. The distillery is preparing to transition to alcohol production again and has some exciting things in store.
In addition to their typical bottled masterpieces, their master mixologist is also whipping up batched cocktails that will be available for purchase, with each bottle containing 4-5 servings each.
Once stay at home orders are lifted, Rohde has even more big plans in store. She hopes to add a kitchen to the distillery to complete her guests’ experience. Additionally, she has a number of creative ideas to get members more involved in the distilling process. (We won’t spoil the surprise, but trust us–it’s going to be great!)
A Partner to Care
Through the tumult of the past few months, one thing Rohde has been extremely thankful for is her relationship with Southland Data Processing. As a previous ADP client, she shares,
I felt like we were just too small for that space. We were recommended to SDP by a local business and just fell in love with everyone there. I’ve been so happy, I haven’t needed to worry about things–they just take care of everything.
In addition to the personal connection she’s felt with the SDP team, Rohde also loves the system. The software is user-friendly and makes payroll and hiring a breeze, especially when she’s short on time. Finally, she loves SDP’s HR seminars:
Those are really important to me. They are so much fun and so informative, and everyone has such great questions! I love them.
Come Have a Drink!
Whether you’re looking for some American-made hand sanitizer or your next happy hour, we cannot recommend Citrus Grove Distillers enough. They are a membership organization due to state laws, but for a one-time $20 membership fee, you’ll receive a lifetime membership and your first drink on the house!
The next time you’re in Claremont (post-quarantine, of course!), stop by to try their vodkas, gins, rums, tequilas, whiskeys, bourbons, liqueurs, brandies – all made in-house and served at their bar! Learn more
SDP Client Spotlights: Celebrating Our Clients
Every month, we highlight one of our amazing clients with the SDP Client Spotlight. Here at Southland Data Processing, we’re in the people business and strive to always put our clients first. So if you or your organization is interested in becoming our next Client Spotlight, please contact us at [email protected] and we’d love to hear your story!
Photo by Citrus Grove Distillers