Sever Your Ties in South Dakota: The Sioux Falls Craft Beer Scene

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Sever your ties in South Dakota, just don’t sever them from South Dakota. With 44 craft breweries and counting, and several of them located in the southeast corner of the state, the Sioux Falls craft beer scene may just need to be your next craft beer destination. So, sever your ties with the idea that South Dakota isn’t about the beer. With Severance Beer Company on the scene, it’s most definitely about the beer. And the people, too.

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The Sioux Falls craft beer scene changed because of a Xmas gift.

When your given a home-brew gift for a Christmas gift, do you take that as a hint to create something bigger, or do you just brew a batch of beer and move on with your life? Scott Heckel, owner and brewer at Severance Brewing Co, took his Christmas gift to heart.

Melissa cutting Scotts tie at Severance Brewing Sioux Falls craft beer South Dakota
Scott and Melissa (courtesy of Severance)

Meet Scott and Melissa of Severance Brewing Co.

Scott and Melissa Heckel may have never thought they were going to own a brewery, but all it took was a job that had Scott dreading Monday mornings and a Christmas gift of a homebrew kit. When the stars didn’t align as originally planned, the brewery idea was put off for the foreseeable future. But Scott was able to see the silver lining and used this time as a chance to build his own severance package.

And when the time finally came for him to quit his corporate job, he literally severed his ties, both with his previous career and with scissors to cut his ties. Changing from a suit into shorts and a t-shirt, on April 1, 2019, Scott walked out of his office and went directly into his brewery. And with Melissa on board as his partner and marketing team, the two may be working more now than they ever have – being parents, too – they’re working for themselves. And so far, neither of them are dreading Monday mornings.

“The higher up you get, the more money you make, the more stress you have, and the more I disliked what I was doing.”

(Scott, before he severed ties. Now he is owner and brewer at Severance Brewing Co in Sioux Falls, SD)

Join us as we chat beer, severing ties, and not waiting for someday. We also talk about sustainability practices in the brewing process, a bit about music, and the South Dakota craft beer scene. Because after everything that these two have going on, Scott is also the current President of the South Dakota State Brewers Guild.  

Oh, the Severance beers we drank!

  • Summer Herbification Project #2 Strawberry, Vanilla, and Basil Sour
  • Emo Eighth Notes Hazy IPA
  • Lolz How Kolsch
  • De Witte Belgian Witbier

Stay Connected with Severance

Severance Brewing Co
701 N. Phillips Ave. #110
Sioux Falls, SD


Want More?

Nebraska isn’t too far from South Dakota.

Grab you boots and head on down the road with our Nebraska brewery tour of the Sandhills Region.

Don’t Wait for Someday!

Whatever your dream may be, don’t wait. Dream it. Plan it. Create it. Live it. Maybe this will get you started.

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“We appreciate you highlighting our brewery on your podcast, your enthusiasm for craft breweries, travel and adventure and the patronage of not only you, but the friends you bring into Tres Litros.”

Jason at Tres Litros Beer Co

“Ken and April do a fantastic job of mixing the culture of beer and adventure into something akin to a fine barrel-aged sour. They are wise beyond their years. Loving this podcast and it will be on our weekly playlist for SURE!”

The Dog In Us


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Shout Outs:

Thank you both, Melissa and Scott, for chatting beer and so much more with us. It’s always a pleasure to sit outside on a patio, soaking up the sunshine, and talking about beer and life. Your insight into cutting ties both literally and figuratively is an inspiration and offers thought-provoking conversations around a topic we should all be talking about. You didn’t wait to sever your ties, and we are thrilled to be able to help spread that message to others, to not wait to sever theirs.


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