Monday, August 11, 2014

18th Street is Expanding!

We tried our first beers from 18th Street Brewery at the Bloomington Craft Beer Festival earlier this year. We were impressed. That's really an understatement though. We liked what we tried in Bloomington so much, we made a special side trip the night before Dark Lord Day to go see 18th Street in person at their location in Gary.

We love to see great beer being created in Indiana and are always excited to see the new breweries having success. Below is a copy of a press release we received announcing some new things in the works for 18th Street. Congratulations to everyone there, and we can't wait to come see the new space and see those cans on our shelves!


Larger tanks, canning line will double production capacity
GARY, IN – Less than one year after opening its doors, 18thStreet Brewery has announced it will double its production by the end of 2014, while also becoming the first Northwest Indiana brewery to have its own canning facility.
Owner Drew Fox is investing in larger equipment and a canning line, combined moves that will allow the Gary brewery to increase production from roughly 500 barrels a year to more than 1,000. That growth will also mean an increased ability to distribute throughout the State of Indiana, as Fox has also reached an agreement with Starlight Distributors to deliver more of 18thStreet’s beers in the Indianapolis area. 18th Street has also reached Europe, after a recent collaboration with Mikkeller, a Copenhagen, Denmark-based brewer. Fox said he is now working to identify a distributor to continue that relationship and keep 18th Street beers flowing in Europe.
The announcement comes just seven months after Rate Beer named 18thStreet as the “Best New Brewer In Indiana.”
“Even before we opened our doors, we’ve had nothing but incredible support from so many people,” Fox said. “Since we opened last winter, that support has been overwhelming. We really can’t thank people enough for that. We’re ecstatic.”
18th Street currently operates with nine 7-barrel fermenters at their production facility at 5725 Miller Ave. Over the next four months, each of those fermenters will be removed and replaced with nine 10-barrel fermenters.
Fox has also purchased a new canning line, currently being assembled by Calgary-based Cask Brewing Systems and set to arrive in late September. That will allow 18th Street to transition from 22oz bottles to canning nearly all of their beer, with bottles reserved for special releases.
“It takes us about eight hours to bottle just one 7-barrel tank,”Fox said. “These moves will make us much more efficient, even as we’re growing.”
Unlike a mobile canner, the canning facility will be the equivalent of a small manufacturing facility emerging in Gary, creating four new jobs with it. It will be built directly across from the brewery.
“We want to be part of a cultural and economic renaissance in Gary, but we also want to help bring small manufacturing back to Gary,” Fox said, “By adding the canning facility, it shows that small manufacturing still has a place in Gary, Indiana."

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