Raleigh, N.C. — For a guy from Cary, beer from California is most familiar.
Wil Cooper, the North Carolina brew rep for Coronado Brewing Company, grew up in Cary before the town blossomed to its current state. Coronado Brewing is based more than 2,500 miles away in Coronado, California, but Cooper brings the Golden State’s brews back home.
Cooper said the brewery now distributes to 13 states and has 16 sales reps across the country. But, despite its growing acclaim, the southern California brewery still feels small—Cooper texts the owners or brewmaster when he has questions.
Cooper said he likes the idea of being part of a hometown brewery, but the growing craft beer industry is making it easier to try beers from other places, too.
“I do see people branching out. I do see more and more people going to try new things,” Cooper said. “We have done really well here, we’ve been in the state of North Carolina for three years. Last year was definitely by far our best year.”
So, look for Coronado at beer festivals around the Triangle where their Orange Avenue Wit pairs well with the summer heat.
What to drink:
Orange Avenue Wit: Brewed with California wheat and yeast, honey from California orange grove blossoms, coriander and orange zest. 5.2% ABV
Guava Islander Tropical IPA: Brewed with Centennial, Chinook and Columbus hops and a dose of guava puree. 7% ABV
Stingray IPA: Brewed with Citra, Mosaic, Simcoe and Southern Cross hops, giving it aromas of tropical fruits and citrus, accents of nectarine and peach. 7.9% ABV