6550 Mira Mesa Boulevard, San Diego
2351 Alpine Boulevard, Alpine
Two of San Diego’s hoppiest brewing operations are, essentially, becoming one. Today, Green Flash Brewing Company (6550 Mira Mesa Boulevard, Mira Mesa) announced that it has acquired Alpine Beer Co. (2351 Alpine Boulevard, Alpine). Described as a partnership by both companies, this is evolutionary in nature to the 2013 agreement Alpine and Green Flash entered into wherein some of the former’s beers would be produced by the latter at their brewery on a monthly basis. Positive interaction proved to Green Flash owner Mike Hinkley and Alpine founder Pat McIlhenney that theirs was a successful collaboration with the legs necessary to go further, hence this next chapter in their companies’ lifespans.
Alpine Beer employees 20 people, making it a relatively small operation, especially compared to Green Flash, which is home to 107 employees. That total will grow when their East Coast brewery in Virginia Beach, Va. opens in 2016. Green Flash’s larger, more traditional business structure was an attractive asset to McIlhenney, in that it will allow his employees to have access to its new owners’ benefits, healthcare packages, 401k, and additional perks his small business was incapable of offering. From a product standpoint, the acquisition stands to significantly increase production capacity for Alpine’s highly coveted but scarcely available beers from 1,500 barrels a year.
In 2015, Green Flash will begin bottling certain Alpine beers. The brewing staff at both operations are currently exploring ideas involving Green Flash’s impressive stash of oak barrels for aging beers, something Alpine is also known for in addition to its prowess in producing hop-centric ales. Barrel-aged beers will be cellared at Green Flash’s upcoming facility in Poway, which will also be outfitted with a tasting room. It’s not the only new venue for these operations. As reported in April, Alpine Beer was interested in taking over a restaurant larger than its brewery-abutting barbecue-centric eatery. That project will move forward in the near future and be located at 1347 Tavern Road.