Stoudts Brewing Announces Plan to Close Operations

As the first female brewmaster since prohibition, Carol Stoudt helped to pioneer the craft brewing movement in the late 80s and early 90s by personally providing support and encouragement to fledgling breweries. Stoudt’s Microfests provided fruitful networking opportunities for brewers and members of the burgeoning craft beer industry.

As Stoudt prepares for retirement, she has made the difficult decision to close the brewery that helped to inspire a generation of craft beer drinkers.

“I did my part. Now it is up to the new generation to continue the tradition of innovation that defines craft beer,” she said in a released posted on the brewery’s website.

In 1987, with her husband Ed’s support, Stoudt added a 30-barrel brewhouse to an already thriving business which included a 70,000 square foot Antiques Mall, Restaurant & Pub, and Indoor/Outdoor Bier Garden. An on-premise bakery and cheesemaking facility would follow.

Under her leadership, Stoudts Brewing became synonymous with quality and is one of the most awarded craft breweries in the industry. Carol’s legacy is built on authentic German beers brewed in the time-tested Reinheitsgebot tradition.

“This was a difficult decision to make,” she said, “but we’re not moving enough volume to justify the expense of keeping the brewery open. However, we’re not closing the doors to any business opportunities that could help the Stoudts brand live on.”

Production will scale down immediately and brewery operations will cease by early Spring in order to prepare the brewery for sale.

Operations will continue as normal for all other divisions of the Stoudts enterprise. The Restaurant & Pub is adding a trivia night and Sunday brunch menus, the Bier Garden will continue to host weddings and events, and the Bakery and Antiques Mall continue to support the local community.

When asked about the future of Stoudts she said, “Stoudts is more than a brand or a location. We’ll just have to see what the future surprises us with.”

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