(ANN ARBOR, Mich) – The Wolverine State Brewing Company is expanding for the second time in two years. With the arrival and installation of new fermentation and conditioning tanks being added to its cellaring operation, the brewery’s production capacity is doubling. Sales in 2012 exceeded company expectations with nearly 1100 barrels sold between retail and wholesale business.
In 2012, the company declared that it is “Leading the Lager Revolution,” and it remains one of the nation’s only lager-centric craft microbreweries with 15 different lagers currently on tap in the Tap Room. The brewery’s three flagship beers—Wolverine Premium, Dark, Amber lagers—are available in six-packs at most major grocery store chains in Washtenaw and Livingston counties including several Meijer, Whole Foods, Busch’s and Kroger stores. In 2013 a fourth year-round bottled beer will be available: the unique and highly sought after Gulo Gulo. This ground-breaking beer is styled as an “India Pale Lager,” and is brewed with over 3 lbs. of hops per barrel and dry-hopped twice.
As a lager-centric small brewery, the Wolverine State Brewing Company is proud to push boundaries for a once-maligned segment of beers. This year, patrons will be able to try numerous new one-of-a-kind lager beers, including:
- BARISTA – a brown lager made with coffee in collaboration with RoosRoast of Ann Arbor
- REVILO – an India Red Lager
- DRAG ME TO HELLES – Maibock
- GREENTHUMB – a lower alcohol, more citrusy version of the India Pale Lager, Gulo Gulo
- CHRYSALIS – a Belgian Wit lager
- VERANO – a Mexican style lager
- WOOD AGED SERIES – including a German-style bock aged on hickory and an India Pale Lager aged on soft maple.
The brewers at the Wolverine State Brewing Company hand craft every batch with care and precision and allow ample time for all the lagers to come into their own. This means that the time “from grain to glass” is much longer, and the amount of beer available for sale or purchase is less, than at ale-centric breweries. The sales numbers can be deceiving since many ale breweries can produce and sell up to 5000 barrels with the same or similar tank capacity. But when the founders of The Wolverine State Brewing Company decided to “go all lager” they put their time, money and craftsmanship behind this unique and expensive business model. So far, all signs point to success, with a Tap Room expansion done, and standing room only crowds most nights.
The lagers-versus-ales-debate is one of taste and preference for drinkers, but for breweries, it is a matter of business choice. The Wolverine State Brewing Company has become a local favorite very quickly. And has more plans for expansion in the works.