Governor McDonnell signed two pieces of legislation to support Virginia craft brewers this afternoon at the Hardywood Park Craft Brewery. House Bill 359 (McClellan) allows manufacturers to lease space in their brewhouses to smaller-scale brewers and Senate Bill 604 (McWaters) allows retail sales of beer and sampling on the premises of Virginia breweries. The governor was joined by legislators, brewers from around the state, distributors, representatives from the Virginia Craft Brewers Guild, representatives from the Virginia Manufacturers Association, commissioners of the Alcoholic Beverage Control Commission, and representatives from the Virginia Tourism Corporation. After the bill signing the governor helped unveil a new logo for craft beer from the Virginia Tourism Corporation: “Virginia is for craft beer Lovers.”
The governor also dropped hops into a batch of Hardywood Park’s “Special Bitters 604,” named in honor of the Senate Bill signed today. The bill signing took place during “American Craft Beer Week,” a week recognizing small and independent craft brewers. Virginia currently has 44 licensed breweries.