Kettle corn comes to Brantley

Published 6:37 pm Friday, April 8, 2022

The Dewrell’s have farmed chickens the majority of their lives. When health issues called an end to Don Dewrell being able to work the chicken houses, he wanted something he could invest in and grow during his retirement. They still have the chicken houses. but the couple are looking to sell them.

“I figured this (a food business) was something I could do, so I gave it to her,” he said motioning to his wife, Terri.

The couple came up with an idea to start a hotdog stand. The idea soon transitioned into opening a kettle corn business.

“We were going to do it with the large kettle, hand stirring,” Don said. “That was three years ago.”

Breathing problems had the Don stepping back and reevaluating how he could accomplish his dream business.

For a time, Don put his food business on the back burner and wasn’t sure he would continue to pursue it.

“We bought a trike,” he said. “I figured we have worked our whole lives so let’s just ride and enjoy it.”

After a few rides, and a little time, Don knew he still had to pursue his business.

After a lot of research, Don discovered equipment that would allow him to continue on the kettle corn path.

“I saw the equipment on the internet and said ‘Hey, we can do this,” he said. Soon after, Dixieland Kettle Corn was born.

The equipment the Dewrell’s purchased is mostly automated, allowing them to make large batches easily and consistently.

“He cooks and we work together on seasoning it and bagging it,” Terri said.

“I enjoy it,” he added. “We are learning as we go,” he said. “It is turning out really good so far.”

Flavors available include movie butter, jalapeno, bacon, barbeque, honey mustard, Cajun, bacon and cheese, pizza, buffalo breath, nacho cheese, cheddar, red cherry, birthday cake, red velvet, toffee, watermelon, blue raspberry, strawberry, green apple, caramel and of course, mixed flavors. The flavor possibilities seem endless. They have not been able to test every flavor yet, but they have experimented with a some and even mixed a few to come up with tasty combination corn.

The kettle corn is popped in coconut oil for a clean taste.

Once the corn is popped in the kettle machine, it is sifted to ensure no un-popped or broken pieces remain. The corn is then transferred to the large kettle with an automated stirring paddle where flavoring is drizzled on and seasoning added.

The Dewrell’s are waiting on a food trailer to come in to house their inventory and serve as a mobile store front at fairs and events. The delayed arrival of the trailer has not slowed them down, however. The couple have participated in a few events and have their kettle corn for sale in select businesses, such as South Ridge Winery in Luverne.

Terri’s heart of gold led her to contact the Animal Safari Park in Montgomery to see if she could donate the un-popped and broken popcorn to the animals. The park was not only excited to receive the donation, but invited the Dewrell’s to set up a tent and sell their goods to safari visitors.

Terri said they are scheduled to be at Barns and Bins Spring Market this Saturday. They will travel to Castleberry the following weekend to participate in the Strawberry Festival. April 23 they will participate in the Spring Festival at Hooper Academy in Hope Hull. You can also catch them at the rodeo in Luverne April 29-30.

If you can’t wait for events to get your kettle corn fix, they are located on Spring Hill Road, just off Highway 29 in Brantley.

“If the flag is out, we are open,” Terri said.

They also take call in orders for special events. They have created kettle corn for gender reveal parties as well as special gifts donated to county teams as they traveled to participate in the state playoffs.

For more information, contact Dixieland Kettle Corn by calling 334-406-4988 or by email at dixielandkettlecornllc@gmail.com