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Just how many brewers do we have in Oklahoma?

by Nick Trougakos Published: July 22, 2014
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I posted a snippet of Oklahoma beer trivia on my Facebook page yesterday, and it started something of a mini-conversation on the interwebs.

Here’s what I posted:

“Random Oklahoma beer trivia: Did you know there are only 10 strong beer brewers officially licensed with ABLE to operate a brewery in Oklahoma? Six of those are in the Oklahoma City area. One is not in business, as far as I can tell. Just thought I’d pass that along.”

I decided to post it after reading the recent piece on the Oklahoma beer scene in Paste magazine. The article’s author claimed to have counted 27 brewers in Oklahoma. To me, that number seemed a little high. Even throwing aside the distinction between being licensed to brew and being licensed to operate a brewery, and even considering the 3.2-level brewpubs we have, 27 seems a bit of a stretch.

So I checked the ABLE licensing list. And sure enough here are the companies licensed to operate a brewery in Oklahoma:

-Battered Boar

-COOP Ale Works

-Huebert

-OKCity Brewing (Mustang)

-Roughtail

-Urban Farmhouse Brewery (Anthem)

-Stillwater Brewing Co.

-Krebs Brewing Co. (Choc)

-Marshall

-Prairie

Like I said in the post, six of 10 are in the Oklahoma City area, while Stillwater Brewing is not currently operational, as best I can tell.

Then we can tack on Black Mesa, Dead Armadillo and The Willows — who are contract brewing — and that brings us to 13. Add Elk Valley, Scissortail, Renaissance and 405 Brewing — who are all in the planning or near-ready stages — and you’ve got 17. Throw in Bricktown, Belle Isle, Royal Bavaria and Beavers Bend (3.2 guys) and now we’re at 21.

(Side notes: 1.) Someone brought up Redbud Brewing on FB. The Redbud label was acquired by Mustang in the transaction for the OKCity Brewing Cooperative. For my purposes, any Redbud offering at this point would be considered a spin-off label from Mustang, and not an example of another brewer in operation. 2.) And then there is the case of Brouwerij Okie — is that a Prairie spin-off? Should it be counted like The Willows and other contract brewers?)

Unless I’m missing several places, I still don’t see where you can get to near 30 brewers in Oklahoma. And really, as best I can tell, there are only 12 full-strength beermakers (13 counting Brouwerij Okie) actually selling beer at the moment in Oklahoma.

So, for whatever that is all worth, there you go. Just trying to help everyone understand our beer landscape a little better.

Pints and Pins

-Mustang is holding a fifth-anniversary block party at McNellie’s OKC, starting at 5 p.m. Friday.

-Dead Armadillo, which has until now brewed at Roughtail’s brewery, has settled on a location for a new Tulsa brewery. It’s at 1004 E Fourth St. — reportedly walking distance to the Blue Dome District.

-American brewers are invading Europe: In the past week, both Stone and Green Flash have announced plans to either brew, or have their beer brewed, in Europe.

by Nick Trougakos
Local Editor
Local Editor Nick Trougakos has been with The Oklahoman since 2002. Trougakos covered the military, federal agencies and courts before becoming an editor in 2005. Prior to joining The Oklahoman, Trougakos was a reporter for the Oklahoma City...
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