Four years ago, Wynwood Brewing Company opened its doors as the City of Miami's first production brewery.
This Saturday, December 2, it will celebrate with a massive block party. From noon to 11 p.m., NW 24th Street will be filled with food trucks, games, live music, and more than 50 kinds of beer, including a few kegs of the brewery's holiday Coqui-To. Admission to the party is free, and beer tickets for people 21 or older cost $6.
Partner and cofounder Luis Brignoni describes the event as a family affair with more than just brews for sale. "We're going to have a dunk tank, kid-friendly events, and a local marketplace," he says.
It's no surprise that Brignoni wants his party to be family-oriented. After all, the other cofounder of the brewery is his father — Luis "Pops" Brignoni. Says the younger Brignoni: "We're a scrappy pop-and-son team making beer in Wynwood. We're not fancy. We just want to make good beer."
That simple strategy has played well for the family brewers. Since 2013, the brewery has won numerous awards and accolades, including a gold medal at the Great American Beer Festival for Pops Porter.
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Last year, the Brignonis announced a partnership with Craft Brew Alliance (CBA), where CBA would purchase a minority, 24.5 percent share of the brewery, allowing Wynwood to pay off debts and expand production. The alliance with CBA also allows the brewery's team access to sophisticated lab equipment, exotic hops, and other raw materials. The partnership does not, however, interfere with the making of the beer, the junior Brignoni says. "It was important for Pops and I to stay independent. All decisions are made by us."
With the brewery on an upward trajectory, the father and son are looking toward the future. "Our biggest thing now is giving our team more responsibility," he says. "Pops and I are stepping back to look at the bigger picture. How do we want the brewery to look in five years?"
For now, however, there's a party to be thrown.
Wynwood Brewing Company Birthday Block Party. Noon to 11 p.m. Saturday, December 2, at Wynwood Brewing Company, 565 NW 24th St., Miami; 305-982-8732; wynwoodbrewing.com. Admission is free.