The History of Blue Mountain Brewery
What goes better together than a great craft beer and a spectacular view of the Blue Ridge Mountains? Some would say nothing. Well, you can have the best of both worlds when you visit Blue Mountain Brewery in Afton, VA. This idyllic hub for famous craft beer opened its doors in 2007 under the supervision of Taylor Smack, Mandi, Smack, and Matt Nucci. Before opening Blue Mountain, all three gained experience in the service industry and brewing from a variety of locations. This certainly added the value needed for them to focus on opening the first brewery in Nelson County.
Taylor started learning the skills needed at another local favorite watering hole, South Street Brewery. After some time getting his feet wet, he attended the Siebel Institute of Technology which is the country’s oldest school for brewing. After graduating, he took a position with Goose Island brewpubs and stayed there until returning to Charlottesville, VA to become the head brewmaster at, where else, South Street. He honed his skills until he and Mandi decided Afton, VA was in need of its own brewery.
Mandi started her early adult life as a member of the Peace Corps before transitioning into the publishing business. Mandi and Taylor met in Chicago and dreamed of opening a brewery one day.
Matt joined the founding team at Blue Mountain after spending years working for a local favorite in the coffee industry, Greenberry’s.
In 2012, the founders decided another location was a good idea. And boy was it! The Blue Mountain Barrel House is located in Arrington, VA where the company has perfected the barrel-aging process for their high quality suds. The views of the Blue Ridge are almost indescribable from this location!
Now you know the history of Blue Mountain Brewery. It’s time to taste the beer!