Owners Michelle and Kevin DeLange are under contract to purchase a 30,000 sq ft building in Aurora, Colorado. This second location will house a 4-vessel, 40 barrel brewhouse that will eventually be capable of producing more than 60,000 barrels of beer per year (one barrel is 31 U.S. gallons). Located just south of I-70 on Tower Road, the new facility should be producing beer by the end of the year, aiming to brew 12,000 barrels in the first year. Dry Dock plans to start by focusing its distribution in Colorado, and begin to consider out of state markets in 2014.
Currently, Dry Dock distributes in 22oz glass “bomber” bottles which it has been doing since January 2011. It also plans to package in aluminum cans in the new production facility. The canning line will be designed and fabricated by Wild Goose (Boulder, CO), a local can line manufacturer. “We will continue to produce the Double IPA, Bligh’s Barleywine and other seasonals in bombers while putting our Apricot Blonde, Hefeweizen, Amber and a hoppy beer in cans,” says Michelle DeLange. Dry Dock Brewing Co. also intends to offer champagne style bottles with cork/cage finish for barrel-aged and sour beers that are produced in later years.
The current Dry Dock Brewery location will remain unchanged, continuing its dual roles of a working brewery and flagship tasting room. However, the East Hampden Avenue facility will be largely exempt from the ever-growing production demands. With the exception of some limited draught only releases, all distribution will come from the new production facility so the present brewery can be used more for experimental, barrel-aged, and sour beers. “We will be able to play even more on our current system. Although it is small, it has all the capabilities of step mashing and decoction that our new, larger brewery will have so it will be a perfect pilot system,” DeLange said.
Dry Dock has yet to decide who will distribute its brand in Colorado, but has been actively interviewing distributors and is close to making a decision. Kevin DeLange said, “There are a few in Colorado that have been inquiring, as they’ve seen us grow, and at least 10 out-of-state distributors have reached out to us as well. We’re going to spend 2013 getting our feet under ourselves here in Colorado.” Since opening in 2005, Dry Dock has never been able to keep up with demand. “We talked to a lot of brewery owners at the Craft Brewers Conference and they all advised us to take it slow. Although this facility has huge potential, we don’t want to over extend ourselves too quickly.”
About Dry Dock Brewing Co.:
Dry Dock was founded in 2005 by Michelle and Kevin DeLange next to The Brew Hut, their homebrew and winemaking shop. In April 2006, Dry Dock won a gold at the World Beer Cup for its HMS Victory ESB in the Special or Best Bitter Category. Since then, Dry Dock has won 3 additional World Beer Cup awards and 11 Great American Beer Festival medals including Small Brewing Company of the Year in 2009. Located in Aurora, Colorado, Dry Dock currently sells 70% of its 3,000 bbl/yr beer production in its tasting room. It also self-distributes in the Denver metro area.