CHARLOTTE, N.C. (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE) – Within the last decade, Charlotte’s beer scene has exploded.
“We were in the first handful of breweries, now I think there are 30 or 40,” the owner of Unknown Brewing Company Brad Shell said.
Two years after moving to the Queen City, Shell opened what is now one of the Queen City’s most well-known breweries.
“I knew we had fans, but I didn’t know that we affected the community it that way,” Shell said.
Eight years after opening in South End, Shell will be handing off the torch to another HopFly Brewing Company from Rocky Mount, North Carolina.
“That’s it for the beer side. It’s a product that we are very proud of and it’s still a great fresh product, but at the same time, there is a time for everything,” he said.
As he plans to serve his last beer this fall, other breweries are preparing to pour their first in Charlotte.
Midnight Milligan will be opening on the west side. Burial, an Asheville-based brewing company is also hoping to open a new taproom in the Plaza-Midwood neighborhood by the winter.
“The Plaza Midwood area specifically was really cool to find and learn about. That neighborhood really speaks to our brand,” Burial Beer Company Co-owner Jess Reiser said.
While breweries fine-tine their new locations, Shell is excited to shift his focus to ginger ale.
He has been producing the drink out of his Mint Street location and will continue to after HopFly takes over.
“It is something that just keeps growing and it has its own legs. We are holding on tight because it is just a rocket ship of growth,” Shell said.