If there was a cinderella story in the BC craft beer industry it has to be the Driftwood Brewing Company. It is not as if anyone doubted them from the humble beginnings of 2008 but rather that no one expected the staggering growth curve that has come from this once-small Victoria based craft brewery.
Founded by Jason Meyer and Kevin Hearsum the Driftwood Brewery was once no more that a dusty old warehouse. After each neighbouring wall has been consecutively broken down the brewery has flourished with its greatest struggle being keeping up with demand. The accolades that come with a beer such as the infamous Fat Tug IPA drive sales and keep patrons continuously begging for more.
Demand has been so high in fact that it was only recently that the Driftwood Brewery even had a tasting room and growler filling station on-site. Prior to recent history if you wanted Driftwood beer you were limited to restaurants, pubs and liquor stores. That said, anywhere you may be in British Columbia, there is always a Driftwood Beer close by.
When we say that growth has been rapid, this is no hyperbolic statement. Stopping in for a visit prior to 2015 Victoria Beer Week further expansion was underway. New holes were knocked into the adjoining walls and the 34HL brewhouse that has served the brewery so well was brewing one of its last batches. In the next room over lay a shiny and bright, brand new 60HL brewhouse. Locally made this new stainless steel contraption would yet again allow Driftwood Brewery to brew more beer.
With massive tanks lining the walls, more tanks on their way and every other area filled with kegs, bottling equipment or other gadgets like a centrifuge space has always been an issue but the growth continues.
Despite continuous success the brand can not sit steady and reap the rewards. Growth is here and there is more to come. Also, a re-brand is under way with the faithful Fat Tug as well as the New Growth Pale Ale and select other brews seeing a face lift thanks to the creative team at Hired Guns in Nanaimo. BC. Watch for the full line to eventually come around to this new look and a fresher image.
Perhaps given the continuous success and astonishing growth this is not a Cinderella story after all but rather just really good beer. With good beer comes good people and satisfied thirsts. Driftwood brewery discovered the key to success early on in their brewing days. The ticket to growth is offering the best beer you can brew and compromising to no one.
Next time you are in Victoria, make a point of stopping in at 102-450 Hillside Ave, Victoria, BC V8T 1Y7. It will be worth the trip!