In a joint press release sent out by Elysian Brewing in Seattle, WA and New Belgium Brewing from Fort Collins, CO:
A Joint Adventure; New Belgium and Elysian Share Breweries
(FORT COLLINS/SEATTLE) July 18, 2008 - New Belgium Brewing and Elysian Brewing Company, two of America’s most award-winning breweries, are creating a new model in the craft brewing industry. The two independently owned breweries announced today that they are working together to brew their distinctive beers at each other’s breweries in Seattle, WA and Ft. Collins, CO. By coming together, New Belgium and Elysian have the ability to increase efficiency, encourage creative experimentation, and take a bold collaborative step into the future of American craft brewing.
Described as an artisanal collaboration, New Belgium and Elysian have agreed to let their brewing teams use each other’s brewhouses while remaining independent enterprises. As the first brewery in the United States to specialize in brewing Belgian beer styles, New Belgium will continue to innovate by brewing small-batch creative and experimental beers in Seattle like the Lips of Faith series while getting closer to their customers in the fertile Pacific Northwest brewing scene.
“This is an exciting time for craft brewers in the U.S. as we dream up new and interesting ways of brewing great beer and working with one another,” said Kim Jordan, CEO and co-founder of New Belgium. “Our respect for the folks at Elysian is tremendous and I can’t wait to celebrate with the first beer that we brew together.”
Elysian in turn will brew larger batches in Fort Collins, CO and be able to handle growing distribution needs as their beers become available in new U.S. markets, like New York, which opened July 1st of this year. Elysian’s head brewer and co-founder, Dick Cantwell, sees the arrangement as a way to grow his production responsibly while working closely with respected industry peers in creative new ways.
“I can’t think of a crew I’d rather work with,” said Cantwell, “and to be able to collaborate with Peter Bouckaert in producing some of their specialty beers here is an enormous honor.”
With mutual love of interesting beer as the primary driver, this alliance doesn’t appear to fall into any typical business stratagem. As the craft brewing scene evolves, adventures such as this may soon become commonplace as groups of brewers utilize each others strengths to bring world-class beers to an expanding audience while staying true to the spirit and origins of the craft brewing movement.