About Us

At Gate 11 Distillery, we are obsessed with flavors and quality.

Every drop of our spirits are a mixture of science and taste – crafted as an indulgence, a ritual, a small moment of delight in your day.

We distill in small batches for big flavor and quality control. We simply can’t stop coming up with new flavors, seasonal releases and new lines of spirits for you to enjoy in restaurants, cocktail bars and as home DIY bartenders.

We are a family owned, small batch distillery founded in 2018 and located within the historic Chattanooga Choo Choo Terminal Station. Come visit us soon for a tour, a tasting or a cocktail!

The Team


Bill Lee – Master Distiller

Gate 11 Distillery is the brainchild and distilled spirits playground of (obsessive, relentless, tenacious) visionary Bill Lee. It is a unique small batch distillery intentionally built to create and share many wonderful new tastes and flavors.

Equal parts entrepreneur and mad scientist, this Sequatchie Valley native, grew up around Chattanooga during his formative years. Bill built a successful career as research chemical engineer for two different Fortune 500 food companies. Looking for new opportunities, he left this secure world to become a pioneering and innovative leader in the US biofuels and bioenergy industries.

Along the way he developed a side gig that has now morphed into a full-time passion – Craft Spirits. Bill developed the spirits that became Shakers and Prairie Organic Vodka during his Minnesota biofuels days. Since returning home in 2009, he has helped good friend Scott Bush design and build the Foundry craft whiskey distillery in Des Moines and has supported whiskey production at Sugarlands, Old Forge and other Tennessee distillers with consulting and gas chromatography testing.

Innovation is a constant way of life at Gate 11 Distillery. Bill and wife, Wanda used the time developing and building out the distillery to perfect their gin formula (its her recipe). Since Gate 11 opened, the Gate 11 team has created and launched award-winning Gate 11 Rum and Infame Absinthe Blanche.

The Gate 11 team continues to explore and develop new distilled spirits products and present them in exciting ways at the cocktail bar.

Wanda Lee – Business Manager

Wanda manages the business side of Gate 11 but importantly also is responsible for cocktail bar and retail operations. Taking care of distillery retail, accounting, purchasing, transportation and payroll would seem to be a full-time job for most but Wanda also oversees bar staffing, recipes, procedures and presentation at our indoor and outdoor cocktail bars. Her background in education and theatre has prepared her well for fronting retail and bar operations. Wanda is also integral to the new product development effort at Gate 11 and in fact, contributed the original botanical formulation for award-winning Gate 11 Dry Gin.

Whitney Belden – Distiller

Whitney is a chemist with a strong technical background in quality assurance and industrial regulatory compliance. At Gate 11, she is involved in all distillation and processing including whiskey fermentation and pot still distillations. Whitney has primary responsibility for our Gin and Absinthe botanical distillations. She is actively involved in creating new exciting products and flavors by conducting distillation trials and spirits evaluation panels supporting new product development. Diligent, clever and eager to learn, Whitney is developing into an expert distiller.

COME VISIT US

Our Distillery and Cocktail Bar/ Tasting Room are both located inside the Choo Choo, Chattanooga’s historic terminal railroad station, at what was formerly known as the station’s Gate 11.

Built in 1909, this massive and beautiful Beaux Arts structure is an international symbol of the historic rail heritage of Chattanooga. Saved from demolition in the early 1970’s by a group of local investors, the Choo Choo complex is currently undergoing yet another reinvention, with the addition of exciting new entertainment, dining and retail offerings.

Our indoor and outdoor cocktail bars and patio look out upon the Glenn Miller Gardens, named after the famed big band leader and singer of the 1941 hit song “Chattanooga Choo Choo.” Come for a sample, stroll through the gardens (where Gate 11 patrons can enjoy open containers!) and be sure to visit our Whiskey Boxcar where we age our whiskeys, and occasionally have sampling events!

Distillery Retail Hours:

Mon – Wed: 11am to 8pm
Thur: 11am to 9:30pm
Fri – Sat: 11am to 11pm
Sun: 11am to 2pm

Cocktail Bar Hours

We are serving cocktails again – at properly spaced tables at our outdoor patio space and to-go in the Choo Choo Gardens!
Mon – Wed: 3pm to 8pm
Thurs: 3pm to 9pm
Fri – Sat: 11am to 10pm
Sun: 11am to 2pm