Oct. 10, 2013. The North Carolina High Country’s very first Brewery, Ale House Restaurant & Inn is now open! The opening follows a full year of renovations to one of the Town of Blowing Rock’s historic downtown properties. It is with great pride that Blowing Rock Brewing Company’s co-founders Jeff Walker & Todd Rice and their families announce the Grand Opening & Ribbon-Cutting hosted by the Blowing Rock Chamber of Commerce.
The Grand Opening will occur Thursday, Oct. 10, at 5:30 p.m. In conjunction with the opening, Blowing Rock Brewing Company has released its Blowing Rock “Ale House Series” brand in addition to its Blowing Rock Legacy Series distributed by Charlotte-based Tryon Distributing Co. Current distribution includes independent retailers and the statewide retail chains such as Harris Teeter, Lowes, Fresh Market, Ingles, Whole Foods, EarthFare, and Total Wine.
In 2012, Walker and Rice partnered with established High Country restaurateurs Lisa Stripling and Rob Dyer to manage the Blowing Rock Ale House & Inn located at 152 Sunset Drive in Blowing Rock. The Ale House & Inn opened this past summer.
“In such a great town like Blowing Rock, we weren’t satisfied doing all this just to serve the same old bar food,” said Rice. “We’re striving for something unique to provide for an exceptional experience.”
Walker, Rice, Stripling & Dyer were determined to offer a new “high standard” for what would ultimately become the cuisine to pair with the high quality artisan ales & lagers brewed on site. The partners hired the husband & wife Executive Chef team Eric & Jenny Virt, and the Virts prepare a seasonally changing menu of freshly made, locally sourced fare.
In July, the Blowing Rock Ale House & Inn opened to rave reviews while the company completed the construction of the brewery during the remainder of the summer season. Walker & Rice had already brought on highly experienced Master Brewer and Production Manager Ray Hodge, who now leads a brewing crew that includes Todd Ritter and Josh Carlough.
“Armed with decades of brewing wisdom and a brand new, high-end boutique brewing system, I can tell you that Ray Hodge and his crew intend to put the Town of Blowing Rock on the National Map for Great Beer,” said Walker.
Today, the company that Walker & Rice had founded in 2008 employs thirty-five people in the local High Country. It has achieved statewide distribution for its brands to several hundred retail accounts including the major chains.
“Our company is quality focused, not quantity focused,” said Rice “…and our Ale House Series brand positions us to focus on product creativity, quality and freshness.”
Commercial financing was provided in part by Yadkin Bank, and all engineering and construction was provided by the services of local craftspeople, contractors and suppliers. The Brew House equipment is a highly customized, state-of-the-art brewing system designed by Blowing Rock Brewing Company in conjunction by Specific Mechanical Systems.
Everyone at Blowing Rock Brewing Company invites you for a visit of the Ale House & Inn and Brewery located at 152 Sunset in Blowing Rock. The Blowing Rock Ale House & Inn and Brewery is open for lunch and dinner from 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. every day except Wednesday.