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Three Rivers Distilling Company

February 9, 2022

  • 224 E. Wallace Street
  • Fort Wayne, IN 46803
  • (260) 745-9355
  • Website
  • Menu

I grew up about an hour south of Chicago. Obvisously, I moved away after college. There were no entry level jobs in my field in Chicago so moving was the only option.

I first moved to Peoria, IL in 2002. I worked there for five years and that’s where J and I met. When she got a job in Lansing in 2008, I moved with her. She got transferred to Kalamazoo in 2009 and we’ve been here ever since.

The rest of my family has stayed close to home. My parents still live in the same house they bought when I was in kindergarten 35 years ago. My brother lives about five miles away in a house my dad’s cousin’s dad built for his family.

We don’t get to see my family nearly as much as we’d like to. My mom has worked waitressing jobs since I was in high school so getting weekends off is a rarity. My brother’s family is deep in to sports with his two girls. Our kids are starting to get in to sports and extra curriculars as well tying us up most weekends.

My brother and I both played baseball growing up. We played on the same Little League (well, our town’s version of Little League…it wasn’t officially sanctioned), Pony League, high school and American Legion teams. I went on to play a couple of years of college baseball while he decided to hang up his cleats after high school instead of going to the local community college to try to keep playing.

Both of my nieces are getting in to travel softball now. My oldest niece plays first base just like her uncle did. In all the years they’ve been playing, I’ve been able to see them play maybe once or twice.

This past weekend, my oldest niece was playing in a tournament in Fort Wayne. I guess indoor dome tournaments are a thing in travel softball. Both of the girls played in one in Crown Point, IN a little while back. My oldest niece’s 14u team got to play in at the The Plex South in Fort Wayne over the weekend.

We had nothing really going on and Fort Wayne isn’t really that far of a drive. It was a nice day so we thought, what the heck, let’s drive to Fort Wayne to watch her play.

You should know me better than that though. I’m not gonna just drive to a city and only do one thing. We were going to make a day out of it. Lunch at a distillery followed by ice skating.

The distillery we picked was Three Rivers Distilling Company on Wallace Street between Clinton and Lafayette. The building is really easy to miss if you’re not looking out for it. It doesn’t really give off restaurant vibes but more like distillery vibes with an added restaurant. J noticed the sign before I did and I quickly turned in to the small parking lot and found a space to park.

We picked Three Rivers Distilling Company for a couple of reason. We like good craft spirits, the menu looked delicious….and igloos. They have igloos.

Fortunately J noticed they had a button for igloo reservation on their website. The latest we could get on a Saturday was 3:30. We ended up moving that to 2:15 after my nieces game was moved an hour ahead due to some teams dropping out of the tournament she was playing in.

We went inside the restaurant first to check in. There’s a small dining room inside that was mostly empty when we got there but had filled up by the time we left. The decor is pretty standard distillery. Concrete floors, metal chairs, barrels used as decoration, exposed ceilings. It’s a nice cozy place but you probably better have reservations even if you want to eat inside.

The hostess took us to our igloo which already had the heat cranked up so it was nice and warm. There is enough room for eight people in each of the igloos and there’s plenty of room for all eight to be comfortable. There’s also a blue tooth speaker in each igloo so you can connect your phone and listen to your own music. We tried that but everyone complained about the music L was picking.

Of course, we started with drinks. I picked the Old Fashioned with their Third Time Bourbon in a smoked glass. The drink also has simple syrup, bitters, a cherry, and an orange peel. J really turned me on to Old Fashions and this one was really good. I’m the kind of guy that can drink good craft bourbon neat but it is nice to have a little extra with a cocktail.

J was going to also get the Old Fashioned but she’s a big fan of mules too. The Ceridwen Mule is Harvester Vodka, lime juice, cranberry juice, simple syrup and ginger beer. She like me take a sip but I’m not a big vodka guy. She really liked it and really liked the crushed ice that kept the drink cold. It soaked up the alcohol and was a bonus treat once she finished the drink.

We also got a third drink for us to share. We both wanted to try the Savannah Gentleman. This drink was the Third Time Bourbon with Georgia Peach Nectar, vanilla, and mint. The vanilla really came through so it was like a Vanilla Bourbon. This is definitely a drink I would order again.

They were a little short on pop while we were there which led to a mini meltdown from B. The only time he gets Sprite is when we eat out but they were out of Sprite. L always gets Lemonade. There was no lemonade. We tried to get them a House Made Peach Soda but neither would give it a chance. J and I ended up drinking most of it and the kids just stuck to their waters.

We started our meal with the Pull Apart Pretzel Bread. The kids loved this. There were two braids of delicious, salty pretzel bread. The bread came with a White Cheddar Bacon Cheese Dip but the kids had no interest. The bread was so good on it’s own. We kept the cheese for our chips and actually ordered another loaf of the pretzel bread for the kids.

There are not a lot of sandwiches on the menu but I still found something that sounded good. My pick was the “CBR” Sandwich. This is a non-typical Chicken, bacon, Ranch combination. The chicken is a smoked thigh chopped up. The bacon is deliciously crispy. The ranch is a fresh herb ranch. There is also arugula on the sandwich to give it a little bit of green. The sandwich is served on a delicious demi-loaf bread. I’m not a huge ranch guy….I don’t even really eat it, but I don’t hate it either. I thought the sandwich combination sounded interesting so I gave it a try. I was not disappointed. It was a delicious sandwich with a delicious, smoky, tender chicken. The sandwich came with Parmesan Ranch Potato chips but I only got a couple of those. I offered some to L and she took pretty much my whole plate. She really liked them.

J ordered the Grown-Up Grilled Cheese. This sandwich is made with a delicious Texas Toast that is stuffed with bacon, brie, apple slices, and arugula. These kind of grilled cheese sandwiches are J’s favorite kind of grilled cheese sandwiches. She can be hesitant on sandwiches like this because some places cut the apples way too thick but that was not the case here. Thin slices of apples with crispy pieces of bacon made this sandwich delicious. Her sandwich also came with the Parmesan Ranch potato chips but unlike me, she got to eat all of hers.

B ordered the kid’s grilled cheese and he was a little turned off at first by the ridges left by the panini press. We told him to just ignore that and start eating. Once he got past the look of it, he ate the majority of his sandwich. He’s like most kids and won’t eat the crust for some reason but other than that, he polished if off. He chose applesauce for his side and he was licking the cup clean before we noticed what he was doing.

L was being kind of cranky and wouldn’t respond when we asked her what she wanted. We finally got out of her that she wanted a salad. We just told the waitress to put in an order for the house salad and leave everything off (grape tomatoes, pickled red onions, candied pecans) and just bring her a plate of mixed greens and ranch. She did end up eating most of the plate…along with my chips…and two loaves of pretzels so we think the crankiness was actually hangriness. But instead of working with us to get food, she just wanted to yell at us.

Our bill for lunch with three cocktails came out to right around $80 before tip.

We got excited about our trip to Fort Wayne after I found Three River Distilling Company. The igloos were a big selling point for us. We’re more likely to eat inside a restaurant now than we were a year ago, but the igloos are still cool and still a fun way to eat lunch.

Three Rivers was a great way to start our day in Fort Wayne. After lunch we went skating at Headwaters Park Ice Rink, watched my niece play softball, then hit up Portillo’s for some Cake Shakes, Italian beef, and hotdogs before heading home. Overall, a great day spent with family in a somewhat new city for us.

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