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Time was in the American craft beer movement that start-up craft brewers had to find their ways to regional or other craft breweries running under capacity if they wanted to brew their brands under contract. That was the path pioneered by Matthew Reich at New Amsterdam and then taken to the stratospheric next level by Jim Koch and Rhonda Kallman at Boston Beer as well as Pete Slosberg and Mark Bronder at Pete’s Brewing: brewers went to other brewers to contract brew. Now, though, a 37-year-old publican in my backyard is turning the whole equation on its head. Per The Boston Globe:

[Daniel] Lanigan is preparing to build what he says will be the country’s first brewery entirely devoted to contract brewing: the making and packaging of beer to meet the exacting specifications of commercial clients. … He expects to draw his customers from several groups, including West Coast microbrewers who want to eliminate cross-country distribution costs, European brands whose products can languish in shipping containers up to three months, and local entrepreneurs who have great brewing and marketing ideas but no brick-and-mortar brewhouse.

In other words, brewers, at least in the Greater Boston area, will not go to other brewers for contract brewing; they’ll go ahead and go right to a contract brewer. As I told The Globe, I’m not aware of any other operation like this in the U.S. It’s like we need a new term for it. Lanigan’s not a contract brewer, and he’s not a brewer who contract-brews, per se; he’s something else altogether. A contracting brewer, perhaps?
· Beer Bistro Owner Plans Unique Brewing Facility [Globe]

Side note: I will be at the Great American Beer Festival on Thursday and Friday, signing copies of The Audacity of Hops and moderating a panel on Southern brewers. Stop by and say hi.

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