A little more than 14 years ago, on April 1, 2001, the Cannery Brewing Company brewed their first batch of beer.
“It seemed like an auspicious day to brew our first batch,” said Patt Dyck, co-owner of the craft brewery.
This week, Cannery Brewing brewed their 1,555th batch, and celebrated another important milestone, breaking ground on their new location on Ellis Street.
“We have come a long way in the last 14 years,” said Dyck, adding that they have expanded as much as they can in their current location. “As we adore our current location in the Cannery Trade Centre, we have simply outgrown our space there. We are building a new brewery that will be larger and better suited to our needs and we are thrilled to be moving downtown.”
Dyck said they hope to have be brewing in the new location early in 2015. She said they will always look back on the Cannery building as their roots.
Jill Bateman, spokesperson for the Trade Centre, said they will miss the Cannery Brewing crew, but the building, which houses many artisanal enterprises, will continue on.
“It’s going to be sad, but we still have a Cannery without the brewery,” said Bateman.
Dyck said they will hold on to their trademark name.
“Another thing that will not change is our commitment to brewing quality craft beer to make us and Penticton proud,” said Dyck.
At the groundbreaking ceremony, Dyck enthused over the structural elements of the building at 383 Ellis St. which will be the brewery’s new home.
“This building, which was previously ANJ Automotive services, has, as our architect says, great bones,” she said. “It was not for very many years that they were doing brick work like you can see at the front, and you can see some of the old windows, that although they are dirty along the top, are that ancient glass that was only made for a few short years.”
The brewing area will be contained in a purpose-built addition to the structure, while the garage area will become the new tasting room.
“We just think it is such a funky space and are delighted to have it,” said Dyck, pointing out the high wood ceilings and the large garage doors.
“Plus, we will expand to have a more robust food menu than we can currently offer. In our new space, you will be able to enjoy our beer alongside really great local food selections. We are again, in this area, blessed with those things,” said Dyck.
Kerri Milton, executive director of the DPA, said having another brewery downtown will do great things for the area, especially Ellis Street, which has long been earmarked to develop into Penticton’s cultural corridor.
“It really does add to the revitalization of our downtown. It will bring more people, more reason to come,” said Milton.
Martin Lewis of recently-opened Bad Tattoo Brewery was also on hand to raise a glass and offer his congratulations. Like Milton, he sees the addition of another downtown brewery as a positive step.
“Bad tattoo is thrilled to have the Cannery move downtown. We love the fact that it just creates more synergy for craft brewing in Penticton and more choices for people to come within walking distance and try the beers,” he said.