‘Nanobrewery’ Bad Wolf Brewing Co. Attracts Crowd at Opening

| June 29, 2013 | 0 Comments | Bristow Biz

Owners Sarah, Jeremy and their son, Issac, during brewing hours at the Bad Wolf Brewing Company.

Co-owner Sarah Meyers of Bad Wolf Brewing Company said she was “pretty excited” when approximately 700 people attended the grand opening of her Manassas brewery last Wednesday.

That was most likely an understatement. Because ever since Jeremy and Sarah Meyers announced the opening date of their family-owned brewing company just south of Old Town Manassas, they created a palpable buzz on the Internet among western Prince William County and Manassas residents.

Wednesday evening that buzz turned into a long line out the door and into the parking lot outside their store.

“We sold out of beer every day last week,” Sarah said, with many people waiting an hour or more just to try their beer.

This week, the Meyers are busily brewing. They are open Wednesdays through Fridays from 4-9 p.m. and Saturdays from 2-10 p.m., and while this week’s tap features Irish Red and Porter, they promise that Orange Cream made of sweet orange peel and vanilla will be on the menu soon (check their website for confirmation!)

Jeremy Meyers smells the hops for brewing.

After that, they expect to keep five to six different on-site crafted beers on tap at all times, beers that will alternate frequently.

“(We plan on having) at least 50 unique beers in the first year,” said Jeremy. “I don’t like repeating myself.”

While Jeremy admits he may have to repeat some customer favorites, he is really looking forward to offering a variety that includes pale, golden and brown ales, porters, reds, IPAs, Saison, ESBs and Belgium darks, like their signature, “On-Coming Storm.”

If the sudden onslaught of new breweries in the area is an unexpected surprise, residents may want to thank their state lawmakers. Turns out, it is a result of a law that was changed as of July 2012 in order to encourage tourism.

Previously, the only way to get a brewery license in Virginia was to also serve food at the establishment. However, now that the law has changed, people can expect more craft breweries that are not restaurants or bars.

While in some ways a brewery is similar to a bar, Jeremy explains that in many cases, it is much more specialized.

For example, Bad Wolf Brewery just serves beer, their beer. It does not offer other spirits, so it’s probably not the best place to bring a friend who is not a beer drinker.

Jeremy and his associate Jesse Johnson work on brewing a new batch of craft beer. After mixing, it will ferment for two weeks before being placed on tap.

On the plus side, customers can order take-out in growlers, which are half-gallon jugs of beer. While it cannot be consumed in the parking lot, Sarah said they are great for taking home, to a friend’s place or to an outdoor venue like Wolf Trap that does not prohibit alcoholic beverages.

Breweries come in all shapes and sizes, and while many people have heard of the term microbrewery, the Meyers have come to calling Bad Wolf a “nanobrewery” because they do all their brewing on one machine and because they have a limited seating area.

Sarah says, it is small like a café or coffee house and the coziness creates a “sense of community.”

“It’s nice because, in a way, you walk in and it gives you a close feeling,” she said.

However, it is also a place where people can bring their own dinners to eat along with their craft beers. Jeremy suggests, since they are so close to Old Town Manassas, customers bring food from one of the restaurants there, being that they are within close proximity.

Ever since Jeremy went to Germany, he dreamed of having better brews in the U.S. He focused that passion toward basement brewing. His home brewery became a model for an assignment in an entrepreneur class the Meyers took together. However, due to the change in the brewery law, they realized their dream could become reality.

Now, people are lined up to try to their craft beers.

Sarah says this is just a start, and they expect to eventually open six days a week as well as host private parties.

Bad Wolf is located at 9776 Center St., Manassas. Readers can visit their website, Facebook page, or keep up with what is new at Bad Wolf on their blog.

© 2013, Bristow Beat. All rights reserved.

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