It's a $14.3 billion industry and it's building in our area.
Craft brewers saw an 18% rise in volume last year, according to recent data from the Brewers Association.
It's something you have to experience for yourself. There's a dire need in our community for people wanting local products and what better way to enjoy these products than with some local entertainment and beer produced right in your own backyard.
One local brewer in Bristol, Tennessee now has the chance to make magic, or craft beer, every day.
Holston River Brewing Company opened its' doors for the first time today.
"I think that successful brewers are the ones that understand flavors," says Mike Pensinger, chief brewer at Holston River Brewing Company.
And not only the flavors, but understanding the needs of the community. According to a recent study by the Brewers Association there are over 2400 U.S. craft breweries.
Not only is there an increase in breweries across the entire United States, but in Tennessee the total number of breweries is almost 30 throughout the entire state.
"It's more of a connoisseur type of product that we're reaching. The craft beer market is a very rapid growing market so it's exciting to be a part of it," says Jamie Upchurch from Holston River Brewing Company.
Across the state line, Wolf Hills Brewery in Abingdon has already gotten a taste of success. In the past 5 years, the brewery has grown from a tasting center to a family-friendly hot spot.
One thing that sets them apart is the percentage of alcohol allowed in the brew.
"In Virginia, we don't have a cap on the alcohol content. In Tennessee, there's a cap on it especially at the brewery on site. I think they're capped off at 6.3," adds Drake Scott, head brewer at Wolf Hills.
Not only does the percentage vary but the flavors and recipes make each brewery distinct.
"You can take the same recipe and go to 5 different breweries and the beer will taste different. And that's because of a number of things. One, me. Two, the water that we use here and the brew systems themselves. Each one has their own little idiosyncrasies that make the beer taste a little different," says Pensinger.
With the unofficial start of summer this weekend what better way to kick it off than stopping by one of these breweries.
To check out Wolf Hills, click her:. http://www.wolfhillsbrewing.com.
To check out Holston River Brewing Company, click here: http://www.holstonriverbrewing.com.
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