“We’re going to hopefully be closing on the property in the next three weeks,” said Nantahala co-owner Joe Rowland. “It will be used as a much-needed distribution and storage site for us.”
Currently the Royal Crown Bottling Company on Deep Creek Road, the 10,000-square-foot building (priced at $250,000) will open avenues of production, cold storage and bottle manufacturing for the brewery. With a year-end craft beer production of around 10,000 barrels (with the end of 2016 projections at 15,000 barrels), Nantahala is the largest brewery west of Asheville, and is quickly positioning itself as one of the largest regionally and in the state.
“Between our current brewery and this new facility, we could see upwards of 35,000 barrels of production in the next few years,” Rowland said. “We’ve waited very patiently for a long time, making the right moves at the right times, watching others expanding their breweries, and now we’ve put together a strong enough brand and infrastructure to get to this point.”
Coming into 2016, Nantahala will be found in 41 counties around North Carolina. And as the company enters its sixth year of operation, the brewery has stuck to the three traits of a successful craft beer company — “good liquid, great marketing, and a unique story.”
“If you want to expand and thrive, you need those three things to grow,” Rowland said. “People know that craft beer is something they want, and the core of us making beer and establishing companies in these small communities that have never had a brewery before is proof of that.”