Odell Brewing is getting into the winemaking business.
The Fort Collins-headquartered craft brewery announced plans last week to open a wine cellar and tasting room on its campus next year.
Odell director of marketing Alex Kayne declined to share how much money the company is investing in the project, which is slated to break ground later this year.
“[I]t’s a substantial investment that accounts for production, tanks, commissioning a new canning line, and renovations for the new tasting room and outdoor patio,” he told Brewbound in an email.
The “Odell Wine Project” will operate out of a 4,000 sq. ft. wine cellar and tasting room adjacent to the 30-year-old craft brewery’s Fort Collins production facility.
The Colorado craft beer company expects to begin selling wine on draft and in 375 mL single-serve cans statewide in Colorado by next summer. Early plans call for self-distribution in Fort Collins and Larimer County, and distribution through Breakthru Beverage for the rest of the Centennial State, Kayne said.
“Beer will always be at the core of who we are, but the Odell Wine Project will bring a whole new exploration of flavors to our long-standing Odell fans and hopefully allow us to introduce ourselves to new fans as well,” Kayne told Brewbound.
In a press release, CEO Wynne Odell said the spirit of the Odell Wine Project is “the never-ending game of exploring, experimenting, and refining.”
“It’s reminiscent of our very early days when we were introducing people to the world of craft beer,” she said in the release. “Now we’re on a journey to learn more about wine and we’re excited to invite our fans to join us.”
Odell’s move into winemaking comes as beer no longer holds a majority of the share of total alcohol servings in the U.S. According to trade group the Beer Institute, beer’s share of total alcohol servings fell to 49 percent last year, down about 1 percent, as hard liquor (35.6 percent) and wine (15.4) both gained share.
Odell ranked as the 23rd largest U.S. craft brewing company, with production of 126,375 barrels of beer in 2018, according to trade group the Brewers Association (BA).
The Odell Wine Project won’t be the company’s only attempt to diversify in 2020. Last month, Odell said it plans to open a 10-barrel pilot brewery in the Sloan’s Lake neighborhood of Denver by late summer 2020. The brewhouse will be Odell’s second in Denver, after opening an outpost in the River North Art District in 2018. Construction on the Sloan’s Lake brewery is slated to begin later this year.
A press release with additional details is included after the jump.