The first anniversary is considered the most important one for any business.
And to celebrate its phenomenal success, Drowned Lands Brewery, located at 251 State School Road on the grounds of the former Mid-Orange Correctional facility, will host an all weekend party from Sept. 2 to Sept. 6.
But on Thursday, Aug. 12, Town of Warwick Supervisor Michael Sweeton and members of the Warwick Valley Chamber of Commerce joined Drowned Lands Brewery founder Mike Kraai and his staff to celebrate the first anniversary with a ribbon-cutting ceremony.
Since the former prison’s closing in 2011 the Warwick Town Board’s objectives in acquiring the property were to create Warwick’s first and only business park that would produce tax revenues and provide jobs.
During its construction Supervisor Sweeton reported that Drowned Lands Brewery would not only fill that bill but was the result of a search by Kraai, a passionate beer entrepreneur with a vision to bring a best-in-class destination brewery for the benefit and enjoyment of both visitors to and residents of Warwick and the surrounding area.
“The beer we create,” Kraai said at that time, “takes its cues from the richest soil in the country, connected distinctly to both time and place and inspired by old world techniques and modern innovation.”
He explained that the Drowned Lands Brewery seeks to create beers that reflect the land itself, partnering with local farmers and featuring an extensive aging program.
The structure that houses the brewery and taproom is a 100-year old refurbished administration building that once belonged to the State School for Boys. The brewery also features an expansive beer garden.
Drowned Lands Brewery is open Thursday and Friday 4 to 10 p.m., Saturday 12 to 10 p.m. and Sunday 12 to 6 p.m. with indoor and outdoor seating and live music. It is also available for private parties.
- Roger Gavan