New Glarus Brewing Company
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|Headquarters||New Glarus, Wisconsin, United States|
|Owner(s)||Dan and Deborah Carey|
The New Glarus Brewing Company is an American brewery founded in 1993. Located in New Glarus, Wisconsin, it is a small independently-owned craft brewery. New Glarus Brewing Company is the 21st largest craft brewer and 32nd largest overall brewing company in the country. Over the years it has received awards for its beers.
The New Glarus Brewing Company was founded in 1993 by Daniel Carey and his wife Deborah Carey. Before starting the New Glarus Brewing Company, Dan Carey was an experienced diploma master brewer. The brewery began in an abandoned warehouse with used brewpub equipment. In 1997, Dan Carey removed copper kettles from a brewery in Germany that was slated to be demolished. When the retiring brew master learned his beloved brew kettle might live on, he sold all of his equipment worth an estimated value of $1 million to the Careys for its scrap value of just over $24,000 US. New Glarus Brewing Company brewed its first beer in October of that year and began selling its product in December.
In May 2006, New Glarus Brewing Company broke ground on a new $21 million facility on a hilltop on the south edge of the village of New Glarus. The facility was designed to look like a Bavarian village and has become a destination for tourists who visit New Glarus. Production at the company's old facility had topped-out at over 65,000 barrels a year. The new 75,000 sq ft (7,000 m2) facility will increase production to 100,000 barrels. The expansion will enable the company to increase production of its "Thumbprint", fruit, barrel-aged, and R&D beers. The number of employees is expected to nearly double from about 35 to 60. Construction was completed on schedule and the first brew at the Hilltop plant was November 15, 2008.
Today the company brews a variety of beers, with its Spotted Cow label leading in sales. New Glarus Brewing company beers are sold exclusively in Wisconsin. From 1998 to 2002, the company's brews were also sold in Illinois, with a majority of its sales in greater Chicago. After a dispute with its distributor, New Glarus Brewing ceased sales in Illinois.
The Green County, Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation says the brewery has a direct and indirect economic impact of about $40 million a year.
The company's best selling brand is Spotted Cow, a cask-conditioned farm house ale, sweetened with corn. The Wisconsin Belgian Red, a fruity Belgian lambic-style ale brewed with Montmorency cherries from Door County, Wisconsin, has won awards in beer competitions around the world, and has ranked in the 100th percentile (highest possible average rating) among the critical beer drinkers at RateBeer.com. The Uff-da Bock, which is a bit stronger than most bocks, is also popular.
New Glarus Brewing Company brews eight beers that are available year-round. In addition, the company produces seven seasonal varieties, including a winter Coffee Stout, lighter summer offerings like Dancing Man Wheat, and a fall Staghorn Oktoberfest. "Thumbprint Series" beers are released at the brewers discretion (usually 4 times per year). These are limited-release brews by owner/brewmaster Dan Carey. There are also limited brewery only releases called the "R&D Series" sold in 500 ml. bottles.
New Glarus beers are distributed exclusively in Wisconsin by 17 independent wholesalers. Many grocery and convenience stores in Wisconsin carry Spotted Cow and a few other varieties. Wisconsin Belgian Red and Raspberry Tart are available only in 750 mL bottles and quarter-barrels (29.3 L); the remaining brews are sold in standard 12-fl oz (U.S.) bottles, in six- and four-packs or cases, and in quarter- and half-barrels. Many bars have Spotted Cow on tap.