What, you thought Anheuser-Busch InBev was going to let the other big brewers have all the fun during their California brewery shopping spree?
In the past four months, we’ve seen Paso Robles, Calif.-based Firestone Walker partner with Boulevard and Brewery Ommegang owner Duvel Moortgat, Petaluma, Calif.-based Lagunitas sell a 50% stake to Heineken NV HEINY, +3.32% and San Diego’s Saint Archer sell to MillerCoors LLC.
Although Anheuser-Busch InBev NV BUD, +2.18% hasn’t exactly been silent during that span — buying Michigan’s Virtue Cider earlier this month — it was noticeably absent from a corner of the map where it has a big production brewery in Van Nuys, but no craft beer presence.
That changed in a big way last week when A-B InBev announced the acquisition of Los Angeles-based Golden Road Brewing Co. Though it only came into being in late 2011 — the brainchild of former Yale University swimmer and Oskar Blues salesperson Meg Gill and Los Angeles bar owner Tony Yanow (Mohawk Bend, Tony’s Darts Away) — Golden Road has seen its production spike from 5,000 barrels in its first full year in 2012 to 15,000 in 2013, 29,400 last year and an estimated 45,000 by the end of this year. Read the full story here.