North Carolina’s Hi-Wire Brewing continues to expand despite the turmoil of the global COVID-19 pandemic with the announcement of a fifth taproom set to open in Wilmington, N.C., in fall of 2020.
Why expand again, why now?
“Steady retail, as well as geographic growth, is central to our business plan, even during a pandemic,” says Chris Frosaker, co-owner of the Asheville-based brewery.
With three North Carolina retail taprooms and a fourth in Tennessee, Hi-Wire Brewing’s total distribution footprint has swelled to eight states since opening in 2013, including the expansion to Virginia in April of this year.
“We have always wanted to plant roots in Eastern North Carolina, and we have found the perfect location and city in Wilmington. We feel at home in the Port City. Hi-Wire has been distributing beer there since 2015 and has seen continuous growth in that market year after year. Our success in the market and our amazing relationship with our wholesaler, Coastal Beverage, gives us the confidence to move forward with another ambitious expansion project despite the uncertain times we are living in.”
Located in Wilmington’s up-and-coming “Soda Pop District,” the 7,920-square-foot taproom will include
- two outdoor beer gardens,
- ample parking, and
- an expansive 24-tap bar in a space that originally served as a car dealership and most recently was home to Carolina Carburetor Specialists since 1983.
“We invested in this project with the intention of redeveloping it in a manner that maintained the building’s original features and character,” noted Andy Hewitt, president of Paramount Real Estate and Development and Hi-Wire’s new landlord in Wilmington. “Hi-Wire’s vision for their space aligned perfectly with our plans, and we could not be more excited to be working with them.”
The large bar will feature 21 taps of Hi-Wire beers, including year-rounds, seasonals, specialties, sours, and one-offs as well as three wine taps. A variety of family-friendly activities including soccer pool, table tennis, shuffleboard, foosball, and other assorted games will round out the taproom.