Food Service & Agriculture, Manufacturing, and Retail

Breweries agree to merge

March 4, 2019
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Gonzo's BiggDogg Brewing and Saugatuck Brewing Co. employees at Gonzo's
Employees from Gonzo's BiggDogg Brewing and Saugatuck Brewing Co. pose for a shot at Gonzo's. Courtesy Saugatuck Brewing Co.

Two West Michigan breweries are joining forces.

Kalamazoo-based Gonzo’s BiggDogg Brewing will merge with Saugatuck Brewing Co. in Douglas, according to Saugatuck Brewing Co.

Under the merger, Gonzo’s brewery and taproom will re-brand as Saugatuck Brewing Co. Kalamazoo.

The merger is awaiting approval from the Michigan Liquor Control Commission and the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau.

“We’re excited to be entering into this new market and be serving our beers along with other great breweries and craft beer bars in the Kalamazoo area,” said Megan Scheerhorn, VP of marketing, Saugatuck Brewing Co. “This is a great opportunity for us to grow as a company and continue the legacy of making great beer at this location for the people of Kalamazoo.”

Management of Gonzo’s brewpub will transfer to Saugatuck Brewing, and Gonzo’s staff will be welcomed into the Saugatuck team. Gonzo’s managing partners will also have shares in Saugatuck Brewing.

Saugatuck Brewing Co. Kalamazoo will keep many selections on the original food menu and add a few Saugatuck Brewing staples. Serving hours will be increased to include lunch seven days a week. Several popular Gonzo’s mainstays and specialty beers will continue to be served like Gonzo’s Vanilla Porter and Burning Sun Redd. Saugatuck Brewing styles will also be produced on site.

Current Pint Club Memberships at Gonzo’s will be honored under the new management. The Pint Club Members at Gonzo’s will receive the same benefits that Saugatuck Brewing Pint Club Members receive, along with discounts at both the Kalamazoo and Douglas locations.

Paul Nowaczyk, a member of Gonzo’s BiggDogg Brewing, said he’s excited for the merger, and it would allow Gonzo’s to share its brews with as many craft beer fans as possible.

“We started building our brand and business prior to 2011 and have expanded to delight customers with statewide distribution in Michigan and into the Chicago market,” Nowaczyk said. “We are excited for this opportunity to work with Saugatuck Brewing Company’s marketing team and extensive distribution network throughout the United States and worldwide for a more expansive consumer reach.”

Saugatuck Brewing Co. was founded in 2005 and distributes 18 styles in bottles and kegs, plus many others available on tap throughout a number of states: Michigan, Ohio, Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, Missouri, Florida, New Jersey, Nevada, Tennessee, Nebraska and several foreign markets.

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