Saturday, May 31, 2008

Jason Oliver to Open Brewpub, Leave Gordon Biersch

A new brewpub will soon open in central Virginia. Mid-Atantic Brewing News has the exciting news in their June/July issue that Jason Oliver, brewer at Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurant in DC and regional brewery supervisor for the chain, will leave the company to become part owner of a new brewpub to open in Nelson County. The new brewpub will be called The Devils Backbone, referring to the local nickname for the neighboring Blue Ridge Mountains. Oliver's partner in the endeavor, Steve Crandall, estimates an October-November opening. MABN quotes Jason on his plans to offer a variety of beverages:
"I've got plenty of ideas and I think we'll be doing some interesting stuff."

"I'm going to have four year-round beers and three or four seasonal beers" he continues, planning a helles lager, a Vienna lager, a hefeweizen and a American-style IPA as his core offerings.

"And then there's going to be two categories which I'm going to have on year-round, but they're going to change within those categories," he continues, "so I'll always have a dark beer on tap and then-always have a Belgian style on tap as well."

Besides his own beers, Oliver says he wants to have two or three rotating guest taps devoted to beers from other Virginia breweries, and "also try to have as many Virginia wines on the wine menu as possible, and every spirit that's made in Virginia I want to have at the bar."

This is the second time in a little over a month that a respected local brewer has announced his plan to leave his current position to open a new brewpub. In April we learned that Bill Madden of Vintage 50 in Leesburg intends to open The Mad Fox Brewing Company somewhere in the Northern Virginia area in the second half of 2009.

Already home to many excellent breweries, "The Old Dominion" continues to become even more attractive as a destination for craft beer enthusiasts.

Update, July 17: Early construction photos.
Update, August 27: More photos.
Update, November 22: It's open.

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