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Victory Brewing Company

The Philadelphia region’s largest craft brewery

Victory Brewing Company

Victory Brewery Company formally began operations in February 1996 in an old Pepperidge Farm factory in Downingtown, Chester County and hasn’t looked back. Credit: M. Fischetti for Visit Philadelphia

Description

Overview

Founded by childhood friends Bill Covaleski and Ron Barchet, who met on a school bus in 1973, Victory Brewery Company formally began operations in February 1996 in an old Pepperidge Farm factory in Downingtown, Chester County and hasn’t looked back.

Over the past nearly 20 years, the brewery has seen awesome growth thanks to its superb line of brews and the industry rise of craft beer sales. Today, it’s one of the largest craft breweries in the entire country — and one of the preeminent breweries in the Philadelphia region.

The Beers

From its humble beginnings brewing barrels of HopDevil Ale, Victory Festbier and Brandywine Valley Lager, Victory has been producing incredibly bold brews “for those who appreciate flavorful beer.”

Summer Love Ale

A collaboration between Victory Brewing Company and Visit Philly’s With Love, Philadelphia XOXO® campaign, Summer Love Ale is a crisp and refreshing local craft beer that’s perfect for the summer season. The Chester-County brewed specialty craft beer — made with pale malts, German hops and Brandywine Creek water — capitalizes on the region’s rich brewing history. The specific style of beer was chosen because it has a broad appeal and is accessible for casual beer drinkers.

The golden brew, which has been available every summer since 2010, is such a popular, refreshing summer ale that Paste Magazine recently ranked Summer Love Ale No. 1 in a blind tasting of summer beers.

Brewery Tours

Victory offers tours of both its Downingtown and Parkesburg facilities.

Casual tours of the Downingtown brewery are available on Friday and Saturday afternoons. Just show up at the retail store for a free, 20-minute informative walk through the brewhouse and fermentation room.

Beer aficionados can also visit the new Victory Brewery in Parkesburg on a chartered bus trip, tour and beer tasting.

The three-and-a-half hour tour package includes a behind-the-scenes look at the brewery, plus tasty food and plenty of beer, really offering beer enthusiasts a behind-the-scenes look at all aspects of the brewing process.

Tickets, $58 per person, include a guided school bus ride from Victory’s Downingtown brewpub to its Parkesburg brewery and back again, plus a welcome beer, and the full guided tour.

The experience covers everything about the brewery and the brewing process — from why the brewery must be situated near the Brandywine River, to a look at the fermentation room, packaging line, hop cooler and the brewhouse.

Following the tour, visitors are treated to refreshments of food and beer pairings, and then sent home with a Parkesburg beer glass, available just to tourgoers.

Tours are available every Saturday. Note that tours groups all depart from the Downingtown brewpub, and participants should arrive a half hour prior to each departure time.

Also, tours are just for folks 21 and up and are limited to 40 people per session, which is split into two separate groups of 20 while touring the facility to allow for conversation during the tour.

Tickets for a Parkesburg tours must be purchased ahead of time here.

Victory in Downingtown

Victory’s brewery’s flagship facility in Downingtown is the perfect place to try more than 25(!) varieties of Victory beer. The brewpub, which is open seven days a week, is enormous and a great place to share a few brews with friends.

It’s not just beer, either. The brewpubs menu is awash with perfect beer food: cheese and charcuterie plates, small plates like shrimp and soba noodle stir-fry and main dishes like slaw dogs, Thai-marinated beef tenderloin tips.

Don’t miss Victory’s retail store, where patrons can pick up rare bottles of brews as well as other Victory merchandise.

Victory in Parkesburg

With demand outpacing supply, Victory faced a tough choice in 2011: Retract markets or expand production. And with the 2014 opening of the company’s new 140,000 square-foot brewhouse in Parkesburg, its clear what option they chose.

The production space is equipped with top-of-the-line brewing technology and tools and is able to brew 225,000 barrels annually – more than double what can be done at Victory’s Downingtown location.

After more than an 18-month planning and development process, Victory has officially expanded its production from a modest Downingtown facility and pub to a state-of-the-art brewery that’s more than 140,000 square feet set on 42 acres in Parkesburg, Pa.

At full capacity, the new brewery has the capability to brew 225,000 barrels annually – more than doubling the current capability in Downingtown. Plus, now the Downingtown brewery will be free to function as more of a brewery lab — the place to create and develop new ideas and recipes for the next generation of Victory beers.

Built exactly to Covaleski and Barchet’s specifications, the Parkesburg space maintains an excellent water source — the west branch of the Brandywine River — and includes top new technology and tools like a proprietary hop separator, clarification room, an automated yeast propagation machine and yeast nursery, a pipe-maze of a fermentation room and an airy custom brewhouse.

But even with all of the new developments, the Victory team remains conscious of environmental impact and made many choices in favor of environmental responsibility, including selecting a re-purposed building, custom climate control and an energy recovery program.

A full-service brewpub and beer garden is set to open in 2015, but until then, weekend tours are available. Tickets for a Parkesburg tours must be purchased ahead of time, and the tour departs from Victory’s Downingtown location via chartered bus.

For information on touring either the Victory facilities at Downingtown or Parkesburg, click the button below.

Read more

Victory in Kennett Square

Set to open in fall 2014, Victory Brewing Company’s newest off-shoot is Kennett Square Victory at Magnolia, a brewpub that will seat 250 patrons, plus another 40 guests outside. The seven-barrel on-site brewery will brew Victory beers, including two or three exclusive to the Kennett Square location, and offer local Pennsylvania wines and even Victory root beer. A small house menu will feature chef-inspired daily menu additions.

For more information on Victory, click the button below.

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The Philadelphia Breweries and Craft Beer Trail

Victory is just one of nearly 50 breweries and brewpubs in the Philadelphia region. Read our Philadelphia Breweries and Craft Beer Trail to see where Philadelphia’s acclaimed beers be tasted and what breweries visitors and residents can tour.

Beer Trail

Details

420 Acorn Lane
Downingtown, PA 19335
(610) 873-0881
Website

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