Old Dominion Brewing Company got its start back in 1989, but as with so many other microbreweries, the roots go back much farther. Founder Jerry Bailey was a federal government worker living in the Washington, DC area when he started to get restless, itching for something more out of life. Having been bitten by the amateur brewing bug after receiving a homebrew kit from his brother Tom back in 1978, he had developed his talents in succeeding years while brewing for his friends. Eventually they suggested the idea of starting a brewpub, and Jerry knew immediately that this was the new path he needed to follow. After researching how to set up the business and writing a business plan, he began to scope out potential homes for the brewery, eventually settling on a location in Loudoun County, VA, in the Washington, DC metro area. To celebrate the brewery’s home, he named the new brewery “Old Dominion,” after the nickname given to the state of Virginia in 1663 by King Charles II of England.
Upon opening for business in 1989, Old Dominion Brewing Company found instant success as Washington, DC’s first microbrewery at a time when the microbrewing revolution was still quite young. A loyal customer base sprouted up within the local population, and Old Dominion beer began flowing to nearby restaurants, pubs, and supermarkets where more and more people were exposed to Old Dominion’s fine product. In the years since, the brewery has been well-recognized in the industry for their excellence, bringing home over a dozen medals from the Great American Beer Festival, as well as being ranked one of the country’s 20 best breweries by Gourmet Food and Wine magazine in 1998 and one of the five best in the U.S. by Smart Money in 2000. In 2007, Jerry Bailey sold Old Dominion to Bill Muehlhauser, an equally-passionate beer lover. Two years later the brewery had grown beyond the capacity of its original home, so it was relocated to a modern brewery in Dover, DE where they continue to produce the same great beers, and are well-positioned to keep up with their ever-growing demand.
For more information about the brewery and scheduled tours, visit www.olddominion.com or call 302-678-4810.