A Fresh Look On Life

1011322_10152020274372516_1004618081_nAbout 19 miles south of Asheville, NC, the air gets a little fresher and the land becomes slightly more open. Like many small towns east of the Mississippi, life tends to move a little bit slower, the water tastes a little different and culture begins to become more homegrown — well, at least outside of the major cities.

It has been there, in Mills River, NC, that Brian Grossman, the son of Sierra Nevada founder Ken Grossman, has begun developing the breweries second home. With 50 percent of Sierra Nevada’s sales being East of the Mississippi, it was the natural next step for the international craft brewery.

Brian Grossman
Brian Grossman

The project spearheaded by Brian, a man who swears he’s never worked a day in his life and grew up being sent down the conveyor belt in beer cases by his dad when he was still a child, promises that the traditional Sierra Nevada Pale Ale won’t change.

“We’ve set up the brewing process just like the location in Chico,” said Brian. “The water here is a little softer, so we’ll have to use additives, but we won’t lose that original taste.”

According to Brian, the shipping from the West Coast to consumers on the East Coast was very costly. “Glass bottles and shipping that far had become extremely expensive,” he said. “We sat down as a family decided the East Coast location would be best thing for the brand.”

Of course, North Carolina, near Ashville in particular, was sure to be the home. With a multitude of major craft expansions also occurring in the area, including New Belgium Brewery opening near Asheville, the company was simply joining the rush back east.

“We had an option to secure a lot of acreage here,” said Brian. “We’ve taken a lot of learning opportunities with this location. We don’t know what beers we will create here just yet. We can’t make a lot of unnecessary beers, because we don’t want to lose freshness.”

However, that doesn’t mean Brian hasn’t thought long and hard about new opportunities. “I’m hoping to find inspiration in a lot of different places, whether it’s on a hike or from a new dish I’m experiencing,” he said. “I hope it gives us a fresh look on life.”

According the Sierra Nevada website, the brewery is sitting on about 19 acres, most of which they will leave intact but develop a trail system with river access. Additionally, the brewery will begin developing 350,000 barrels in its phase one, and move on to 750,000 barrels in phase two.

“When people taste the beer and can’t tell where it came from, that’s when I know I did my job,” said Brian.


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