Knotty Pine gains new owners

M.P. Regan
Wednesday, July 28, 2021
Bar two

New owners Taylor Mandella and Issac Williams stand outside their Knotty Pine in downtown Dillon. M.P. Regan photo

They’d been bartenders for years in Bozeman and partners in life.

Then Taylor Mandella and Issac Williams decided to take their lives and careers on a new adventure, moving to Dillon to become the new owners of the Knotty Pine.

“We were both career bartenders and thought, ‘why not— let’s buy a bar; let’s have our own bar,’” recalled Taylor of her response from finding out a bar was for sale in downtown Dillon.

“We were ready to turn a page,” said Issac, who responded with equal enthusiasm after learning there was a bar for sale on the busiest street corner in downtown Dillon, at Bannack and Montana streets.

“We’ve always loved this area,” said Taylor of Dillon and Beaverhead County, which the couple had visited on fishing and hiking trips.

“We’d been coming to Dillon a lot and just loved it.”

“Everyone raves about Dillon, everyone said they loved it, had great stories to tell about coming here. And all the locals we’ve met love this place,” added Issac, who had been in the Knotty Pine before on a Labor Day weekend last decade.

“We were like, ‘yeah, we’ll buy it,’” said Issac of the transaction that wrapped up last month, with the bar reopening June 26 after a couple weeks of renovations.

While freshening up the place, the renovations retained the essential nature of the Knotty Pine, which will continue to feature pool, darts and the sort of patrons who have populated it for years.

“People still have fun, laugh, get a little too loud,” smiled Issac of the clientele in the drinking establishment that hosts a 5–7 p.m. Happy Hour, each weekday, featuring a variety of beers on tap and in bottles.

“If you want a cocktail, we know how to make a good cocktail,” promised Issac, who will have Bloody Mary specials on Sundays.

“We’re happy and excited to be here,” said Taylor of the couple’s transfer of their talents to the Knotty Pine.

“Thanks to everyone who has welcomed us. It’s felt very genuine.”