Some big news in our local beer world: a group led by New Belgium Brewing Company (which is a 100 percent employee-owned brewery, by the way)—with Elysian founder Dick Cantwell and Belgian lambic producer Oud Beersel as minority partners—is purchasing the assets of Magnolia Brewing as part of a bankruptcy proceeding (Magnolia encountered financial difficulties and filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in November 2015).
Both Magnolia locations will continue to operate with existing staff and brands. Cantwell will head up brewing operations and will be working alongside Magnolia founder Dave McLean, who will be an employee of the partnership. The press release states: “The plan is to build an alliance that brings varied talent and experience to a combination of old and new, not to turn Magnolia’s Haight Street and Dogpatch locations into New Belgium brewpubs.”
Another component (and experiment!) will be blending Magnolia beers with Belgian lambic producer Oud Beersel’s beers, making this the “world’s first dedicated lambic blendery outside of Belgium.” New Belgium is also likely to ship beer to San Francisco for blending from its Fort Collins, Colorado brewery. Here’s to a successful future and collaborations for all involved.