Founder Ken Grossman learned to homebrew from the father of a close friend. From an early age, he was enamored by the sights and smells of the fermenting jugs of bubbling beer, wine and sake. His first attempts at making beer were rudimentary at best, but began lifelong passion for the art of fermentation.
Sierra Nevada has an equally strong commitment to the environment and this commitment was first demonstrated with four 250-kilowatt co-generation hydrogen fuel cells at the brewery, followed by solar panels in the first phase of what would eventually become the nation’s largest private solar array. To date, the brewery is powered by over 10,000 individual panels creating over 1.5 megawatts of AC electricity.
In 2008, The first ever Beer Camp® was held at the brewery, as restaurateurs and bar owners came to Chico for a two-day, hands-on beer experience. The resulting beer, an Imperial Pilsner called Sierra Super 7, ushered in Beer Camp® as a regular event, and to date, hundreds have come to experience Beer Camp®. In 2014, Sierra Nevada launched Beer Camp Across America, a traveling beer festival and the largest celebration of craft beer in history. Every single US craft brewery was invited to the festivals, and more than 700 came out to pour their beers. Sierra Nevada also partnered with 12 exceptional craft breweries to create 12 different beers for one Beer Camp Across America mixed 12-pack—a first in the craft beer world.
As Sierra Nevada expands to a second facility in Mills River, NC (only 20 minutes from downtown Asheville), the brewery continues to spread it’s commitment to excellent beer across the nation and beyond.