Flying Fish Brewing
|~50,000 U.S. barrels|
Flying Fish Brewing Company is a craft brewery based in Somerdale, New Jersey. Founded in 1995 in Cherry Hill, it moved to its Somerdale location in 2012. It is today the largest brewery in New Jersey.
Flying Fish was established in 1995 as the world’s first virtual microbrewery, something novel that drew a lot of attention. Flying Fish sold their product completely over the internet and shipped it to the customers location. Capitalizing on this early notoriety, founder Gene Muller took Flying Fish into brick and mortar, constructing the first microbrewery in South Jersey. Following his success online, Muller partnered with Andrew Newell to help secure funding for a permanent establishment. While New Jersey once boasted more than 50 breweries, Flying Fish was the first new brewery built in Southern New Jersey in more than 50 years.
After opening in 1996, Flying Fish hit financial trouble due to a "craft brewing bubble" that popped. Many of the craft breweries closed down due to lack of profit and over saturation of the market. With this level of competition, Muller recalls the time as very difficult to stay afloat. Flying Fish was able to gain more funding so it could buy a larger volume of packaging, making their pricing more competitive in the market and was able to stay open.
Business grew, and Flying Fish began to produce a range of beers year-round, along with a variety of seasonal specialties. Flying Fish beers are ten-time medal winners at the Great American Beer Festival, the most of any New Jersey brewery. Success meant expansion, and in 2012, Flying Fish moved from Cherry Hill to its new facility in Somerdale, making it the largest brewery built in the state since prohibition. The transition saw Flying Fish go from a 10,000 square ft. to 45,000 square ft. building and increase productivity from 20 barrels to 50 barrels at a time. However, due to new automation in the Somerdale location it has been able to brew three times the amount of beer in less time. The tasting room at Somerdale offers weekly one-off and barrel aged beers.
On November 9th, Flying Fish announced that Gene Muller would be moving solely to the founder position of Flying Fish. In his stead Lou Romano became President, effective November 20, 2017. Romano, who began working in the beer business at age 16, came most recently from Oskar Blues Brewery, where he served as National Sales Manager since 2013. Before that, Romano served in a variety of capacities, including Director of Marketing & Wholesaler Development, for D. G. Yuengling & Son.
Community and charity
This facility boasts many sustainability features, to increase water and energy conservation, to brew the award-winning beer in the most environmentally friendly way possible. In 2014 Flying Fish worked along side the Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey in an effort to help educate locals about the Piping Plover "Bahamas Project" and showed a connection between The Bahamas and the U.S. for the endangered beach nesting bird species.
Flying Fish is also known for its ties to the community: each year, the company donates more than $100,000 in goods, services and merchandise to local nonprofit causes. Flying Fish also has partnered with Great American Brewery Runs, an organization that partners with local breweries to host festivals and charity runs. Flying Fish hosts the "Flying Fish 5k" at its Somerdale location. In 2013, following the events of Hurricane Sandy, Flying Fish crafted a new hybrid beer called "Forever Unloved Sandy" in which all proceeds went to charitable efforts to restore New Jersey.
Regular seasonal drafts are the Oktoberfish, Farmhouse Golden Ale, and Grand Cru Winter Reserve. The latter two are bottle-conditioned. Less available (often only in growlers at the brewery) are Big Fish Barleywine, a Coffee Porter, Love Fish (a cherry-infused Belgian Abbey Dubbel available around Valentine's Day), Black Fish, and Imperial Espresso Porter. In January 2012, Flying Fish added Red Fish, a hoppy red ale, to its lineup.
In the summer of 2004, Flying Fish produced a blueberry flavored Abbey Dubbel available only in 1/6 kegs to recipients of the brewery's mailing list.
First in the region to be featured at the Great British Beer Festival, Flying Fish has also been featured at the Oregon Brewers Festival and Canada's Biere de Mondial Festival and has also won several medals at both the Real Ale Festival in Chicago and the World Beer Championships.
In 2009, Flying Fish began releasing a series of beers named after New Jersey Turnpike exits, each in styles intended to represent the part of the state served by that exit. New beers in the series are released at variable intervals, usually several months apart, with an extended hiatus as Flying Fish moved into their new facility in 2012. The inaugural release in the series honored the brewery's home exit, Exit 4, in March 2009. The exit series has generated some controversy, as the NJ chapter of MADD has criticized the association of driving and alcohol.
|Exit 4||American Trippel||March 2009|
|Exit 11||Hoppy American Wheat||July 2009|
|Exit 1||Bayshore Oyster Stout||October 2009|
|Exit 16||Wild Rice Double IPA||March 2010|
|Exit 6||Wallonian Rye||June 2010|
|Exit 13||Chocolate Stout||December 2010|
|Exit 9||Hoppy Scarlet Ale||March 2011|
|Exit 8||Chestnut Brown Ale||February 2012|
|Exit 3||Blueberry Braggot||February 2015|
|Exit 15||Coffee IPA||October 2015|
|Exit 18||Baltic Porter||February 2016|
|Exit 5||Pinelands Sour Forage Ale||September 2016|
|Exit 7||Pork Roll Porter||September 2016|
|Exit 14||Imperial Pilsner||September 2016|
|Exit 2||Rosemary Double IPA||February 2017|
|Exit 12||Maibock||May 2017|
- "The New Flying Fish Brewery Open For Business". Retrieved 11 July 2018.
- "Interview with Gene Muller, 2016 January 29 | Hagley Digital Archives". digital.hagley.org. Retrieved 2018-12-10.
- "Flying Fish Brewing Announces Leadership Change". Brewing Industry Guide. Retrieved 2018-12-10.
- "Flying Fish Brewing Company « Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey". Retrieved 2018-12-10.
- "Home". Great American Brewery Runs. Retrieved 2018-12-10.
- "Flying Fish Brewing to Release F. U. Sandy Beer for Charity". Drink Philly. Retrieved 2018-12-10.
- "Flying Fish Accounces Exit 1 - The Barley Blog". 16 October 2009. Retrieved 11 July 2018.
- "Flying Fish Exit 16 Wild Rice Double IPA arrives in March". 13 February 2010. Retrieved 11 July 2018.
- "Flying Fish Exit 6 Wallonian Rye to be released in early June". 6 May 2010. Retrieved 11 July 2018.
- "Flying Fish Exit 13 Chocolate Stout arrives next month". 4 November 2010. Retrieved 11 July 2018.
- "Flying Fish Exit 9 Hoppy Scarlet Ale due out in early March". 6 February 2011. Retrieved 11 July 2018.
- "Blueberry Braggot - Flying Fish Brewing Co". Retrieved 11 July 2018.
- "Exit 15 Release Friday October 9th - Flying Fish Brewing Co". 7 October 2015. Retrieved 11 July 2018.
- Klein, Michael (2016-02-08). "Flying Fish debuts a Baltic porter, Exit 18". Philly.com. Philadelphia Media Network, PBC. Retrieved 2016-02-12.
- "Pork roll beer: Exclusive look at Flying Fish's meaty new brew". Retrieved 11 July 2018.
- "Exit 2 Rosemary Double IPA - Flying Fish Brewing Co". Retrieved 11 July 2018.
- "Exit 12 Maibock - Flying Fish Brewing Co". Retrieved 11 July 2018.