Two more breweries eyeing Grantville

Prodigy, Black Mast latest to target former brewing wasteland

It seems like only yesterday that Grantville had nary a brewery in its little-understood boundaries. That’s because it was almost yesterday that this was the case. But no more. With last year’s arrival of Benchmark Brewing Company and Groundswell Brewing Company, the Mission Valley neighborhood now has three legitimate brewing operations to call its own, and two more work-in-progress companies have set their sights on opening there, as well.

Dean Rouleau, the former brewmaster for San Diego Brewing Company, Grantville’s first brewery (though it was always regarded as simply being in Mission Valley), has identified a spot in his old stomping grounds where he hopes to install his passion project, Prodigy Brewing Company. Doing so will require a Kickstarter campaign, but he has much of the equipment and ingredients he’ll need beyond straight financial resources. Then there’s Black Mast Brewing Company, an interest that, after over a year of working toward becoming a reality, recently achieved the goals of its Indiegogo campaign.

It’s hard to say exactly what has made Grantville so suddenly viable as a base of brewing operations, but with the realistic potential for the number of breweries in the community going from one to potentially five in just over a year, one has to ask if this is the next Vista, a city that ten breweries (with 11 facilities) currently call home. Considering Grantville’s acreage deficiency in comparison to Vista, it’s unlikely, but if this geo-trend continues, the former’s per capita figures will be some of the highest in the county.

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This is why Grantville is now such a viable base for the new breweries: Governor Brown’s termination of redevelopment in 2011. Up until then Grantville was a redevelopment project area. With this designation came the potential for the Redevelopment Agency to seize business properties via eminent domain for any reason. Since redevelopment was stopped, we have seen many new businesses come into Grantville, not just the breweries. It seems that the uncertainty of redevelopment actually discouraged businesses from investing in Grantville.

And think about it. Grantville is the perfect place for breweries. There are plenty of buildings designed with light-industrial purposes in mind. Grantville is also centrally located at the confluence of I-8, I-15, Friars Road, Mission Gorge and Fairmount. What better location for an industry with distribution in mind.

Anyway, this reminds me: need to get a growler from Groundswell.

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