BUELLTON, Calif. - One of the smallest cities on the Central Coast is experiencing a big turnaround with Buellton becoming the economic hub of the Santa Ynez Valley.
They were in good spirits Friday night for the grand opening and ribbon-cutting of the Brothers Spirits Tasting Room on Industrial Way which is fast becoming a popular destination for food and drink in Buellton.
"Buellton is one of the more progressive towns I've ever been in", says Brothers Spirits owner Jay Lockwood, "they make it very easy for business to get in and get going, you see our turnout here tonight, this is an awesome turnout, and the thoughts and ideas that are coming into this town are great."
The opening of Brothers Spirits micro-distillery is the latest example of an economic turnaround in Buellton.
After years of little to no activity due mostly to the Great Recession, Buellton is booming with new business activity and construction that includes commercial, retail and residential.
"The economy is really picking up, and we do have a good tax base here in the city as far as sales tax and property tax", says Buellton City Manager Marc Bierdzinski, "and we have the support of the City Council and Planning Commission that encourage development, quality development, that looks good."
With the Avenue of the Flags Specific Plan still on the drawing board, and a steady flow of tourism from the local wine region, all signs point to the boom continuing in Buellton.
"We're at a great crossroads at Highway 246 and Highway 101", says Buellton Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Kathy Vreeland, "I think some of our efforts in marketing that we've been able to do and head out to retail shows and try to hunt down some of these developers and let them know Buellton is open for business."