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Craft Brewing and Distilling News for November 11, 2013

November 11, 2013

•Don Sutcliffe, managing director of California-based Craft Distillers, and Willie Phillips, former managing director of The Macallan, have collaborated on a new series of Scotch whiskies. To be known as The Exceptional by Sutcliffe & Son, the line is debuting this month with a whisky called The Exceptional Grain, made from a blend of barrels from the Loch Lomond, North British and Carsebridge distilleries, married in first-fill Sherry casks. The first release is 1,500 bottles, retailing at $100 apiece, with availability through Craft Distillers in all major U.S. markets. Two more whiskies, The Exceptional Malt and The Exceptional Blend, are slated to appear in 2014 and 2015 respectively. Craft Distillers’ other brands include Low Gap whiskey, Germain-Robin brandy, Maison Surrenne Cognac, Los Nahuales Mezcal and Crispin’s Rose Liqueur.

•Texas craft distiller JEM Beverage Co. is entering the Nevada market, joining Texas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Mississippi, Georgia, Tennessee, Arkansas and Massachusetts in the company’s distribution footprint. Beer distributor Bonanza Beverage will handle JEM’s brands in the Nevada market, focusing on the southern part of the state. JEM’s portfolio includes Western Son vodka, Red River whiskey, South House moonshine, Southern Son vodka and Stingray Spiced Rum.

•Downingtown, Pennsylvania-based Victory Brewing has broken ground on the site of its second brewpub, Victory at Magnolia, to be located in Kennett Square. Set to open in the second quarter of 2014, the planned 250-seat restaurant with space for outdoor dining will occupy all 8,138 square feet of the bottom floor of a four-story, luxury apartment building at upscale residential community Magnolia Place. Victory, whose beers include HopDevil IPA, Headwaters Pale Ale, Prima Pils and Golden Monkey, opened its Downingtown brewpub in 1996. The company’s brews are distributed in 31 U.S. markets.

•Denver, Colorado’s River North Brewery is upping its fermentation capacity by more than 40% with the addiiton of two 30-barrel fermenters. Additionally, a new 30-barrel brite beer tank is effectively tripling the brewery’s carbonation space. River North says the moves will allow it to keep up with demand for River North White, its Belgian-style witbier, which was recently released in canned four-packs. A second canned offering, a Belgian-style red IPA to be known as River North Ale, is expected to hit shelves in the next two to three months. In its second year of operation, River North expects to produce more than 1,000 barrels this year.

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