Wicked Weed Brewing Co. from Asheville/North Carolina is the 13th jewel in the crown of AB InBev’s craft beer portfolio and the 10th US craft brewer acquired by The High End, which bundles AB InBev’s craft beer and US import activities. Terms of the deal, which is still subject to regulatory approval were not disclosed. However, AB InBev's official statement suggest that Wicked Weeds' founders will stay involved with the business.
Wicked Weed was founded in 2012 by Walt and Luke Dickinson and lifelong friends Ryan, Rick and Denise Guthy in in the popular craft beer-soaked mecca of Asheville, North Carolina. The name, Wicked Weed, refers to the 1500s, when the hops used in Belgium and Germany started moving into England, and Henry VIII allegedly proclaimed them “wicked and pernicious weeds.”
The company created since its beginnings over 500 different beer styles and sold last year about 22,000 barrels (26.233 hl) out of four breweries in Asheville.
The original brewpub consistently hosts 25+ beers on tap including hop-forward, West Coast-style ales, open fermented Belgians, and barrel-aged beers. The second location, The Funkatorium opened in October 2013 in Asheville’s South Slope Brewery District and is devoted to barrel-aged sour and wild beers. Wicked Weed continued its expansion in summer 2015 with a 50-barrel production brewery in West Asheville allowing for a wider distribution footprint in select states. The latest brewery opened up last fall in South Asheville and is entirely devoted to the production of sour, farmhouse and wild-fermented beers.
“This is an exciting time for the entire brewing team,” said Wicked Weed’s co-founder Walt Dickinson. “Our ability to create a wide range of really well executed beers that are focused on creativity, quality and drinkability is what makes Wicked Weed great. We have chosen to partner with The High End to position ourselves to make Wicked Weed what we imagined it could be when we first sat at a craft beer bar and talked about opening a brewery. As a brewer, giving our team more resources to continue innovating our portfolio and the ability to reach more craft drinkers, allows us to keep putting the beer and the people first.”
“We are excited to welcome Walt, Luke, Ryan, Rick, Denise, and the entire Wicked Weed team into our High End family, said Felipe Szpigel, president, The High End. The new acquisition fits well in the geographically well balanced portfolio of The High End which includes now Goose Island, Chicago/Illinois (March 2011); Blue Point Brewing, Long Island/New York (Feb. 2014); 10 Barrel Brewing, Boise/Oregon (Nov. 2014); Elysian Brewing, Seattle/Washington (Jan. 2015); Golden Road Brewing, Los Angeles/California (Sept. 2015); Breckenridge Brewing, Denver/Colorado (Dec. 2015); Four Peaks Brewing, Tempe/Arizona (Dec. 2015); Camden Town Brewery, London/UK (Dec. 2015); Devils Backbone Brewing, Roseland/Virginia (Apr. 2016); Birra del Borgo, Rome/Italy (Apr. 2016); Karbach Brewing, Houston/Texas (Nov. 2016, Texas) ; Brouwerij Bosteels, Buggenhout/Belgium (Sep. 2016) and Wicked Weed Brewing, Asheville/ North Carolina (May 2017).