Green Flash Brewing Co. breaks ground in Virginia Beach
The co-founders of Green Flash Brewing Co., Mike and Lisa Hinkley, joined local and state officials Monday in a groundbreaking in Virginia Beach for the San Diego-based brewery’s first East Coast location.
Brewmaster Chuck Silva, state Sen.Jeffrey McWaters, Secretary of Commerce and Trade Maurice Jones and Virginia Beach Mayor William D. Sessoms were on hand to mark the official start of construction of the 58,000-square-foot brewery, tasting room and beer garden at the corner of General Booth Boulevard and Corporate Landing.
Green Flash partnered with Hampton Roads-based developers, The Miller Group, to proceed with land acquisition, design and permitting.
“When they reach capacity, Green Flash will be producing 100,000 barrels of beer every year from Virginia Beach, and that is certainly something to celebrate,” Mayor William D. Sessoms of Virginia Beach said in a statement.
“We extend many thanks to everyone in the community for making us feel welcome and at home from day one and look forward to celebrating our opening upon completion of construction in 2016,” said Mike Hinkley.
According to the city of Virginia Beach, a steadily growing demand for Green Flash beers on the East Coast prompted the need for a second brewery. Virginia Beach was chosen because of its ease of access from mid-Atlantic corridors as well as for its coastal landscape and cultural similarities to San Diego.
The Virginia brewery will allow Green Flash to cold-ship fresh beer via second-day freight. This will result in lower pricing at retail and a smaller carbon footprint.
“Most importantly,” said Green Flash co-founder and vice president of Marketing Lisa Hinkley, “we will have the chance to further connect with our customers on the East Coast … Our most powerful brand building comes when we are face to face with our customers and they can see, hear, feel and taste our beer at the source. It is then that they are able to experience our passion for brewing innovation and explore our craft first-hand.”
From a production standpoint, the new brewery will replicate the production capabilities of the Green Flash headquarters in San Diego. The brewery’s interior footprint will follow the same plan with most equipment installed prior to opening. The fermentation tanks will be delivered in three phases: 50 percent of capacity up front, with 25 percent added as needed until reaching the operation’s full capacity to meet demand. Upon opening, the Virginia Beach facility will employ 40 people and represent $20 million of invested capital.