Elysian Brewing latest A-B acquisition

Anheuser-Busch announced it has agreed to purchase Elysian Brewing in Seattle, Wash., the third craft brewery (as defined by the Brewers Association) the brewing giant has acquired inside of 12 months.

“For two decades, we’ve welcomed guests into our brewpubs and served them creative and impeccably crafted beers,” Elysian CEO Joe Bisacca said for a press release. He and his partners, Dick Cantwell and David Buhler, will continue with the brewery. “After a lot of hard work, we’ve grown from one Seattle brewpub to four pub locations and a production brewery. With the support of Anheuser-Busch, we will build on past successes and share our beers with more beer lovers moving forward.”

Cantwell added, “Throughout our journey we’ve been focused on brewing a portfolio of both classic and groundbreaking beers and supporting innovation and camaraderie in the beer industry through collaboration and experimentation. By joining with Anheuser-Busch we’ll be able to take the next steps to bring that energy and commitment to a larger audience.”

“Elysian’s story includes everything we look for in a partner,” said Andy Goeler, CEO, Craft, Anheuser-Busch. “The team has spent their careers brewing distinctive beers in the thriving West Coast beer community and building unique venues that celebrate beer. As the fastest growing brewer in Washington, their recipe is working. Elysian’s brands are an important addition to our high-end beer portfolio, and we look forward to working together.”

In addition to the Seattle Airport Way brewery, the acquisition includes the company’s four Seattle brewpubs, Elysian Capitol Hill, Elysian Tangletown, Elysian Fields and Elysian BAR.

Within the past year, A-B also bought Blue Point Brewing in New York and 10 Barrel Brewing in Oregon.

Cantwell talked at length with Seattle Beer News about the deal, among other things saying, “To be perfectly honest, I have a lot of ambivalence about it. It wasn’t necessarily the outcome I was looking for, but I think it is going to ultimately be a really positive step for us in terms of the capabilities, the resources, the opportunities for our folks to further their educations and their brewing experiences. That’s the side of it that I’m trying to concentrate on.”

He also said the brewery would not stop making Loser, which was first brewed to celebrate Sub Pop Records’ 20th anniversary. The marketing slogan for the beer is “Corporate Beer Still Sucks.” “We’re not going to stop making that, anymore than we’re going to stop doing anything else that we’ve been doing,” he said.

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