When They Get Old

This has been a bit of a hobby horse of mine lately: what happens when the founding generation ages out and want to retire from brewing? They sell their baby. Case in point:
The North Bay Business Journal broke the news today that the Anderson Valley Brewing Company, now in its 23rd year, was sold to HMB Holdings, LLC. A year ago I interviewed AVBC founder Ken Allen regarding family-owned breweries and he revealed he was already in discussions to unload his brewery. “The problem is that I’m getting to be an old man,” said Allen. “I don’t have the ambition I used to have. In fact, I’ve kind of announced the brewery’s for sale. In another few months I’m going to be 70 years old and it’s getting to where I don’t like the stress anymore.”
This is huge news: Anderson Valley can lay claim to being one of the most consistently high-quality breweries in America over the past 20 years. Will HMB Holdings regard it with the same loving tenderness as Ken Allen? Let's hope so.