Grondin family honours their past through new craft brewery venture

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

The Grondin family has spent 150 years on their land at the corner of County Road 20 and Howard Ave. and plan to celebrate with a few beers.

That plan further calls for that beer to be made by themselves.

Greg, Cathy, Dwayne and Jen Grondin are in the process of opening G.L. Heritage Brewery with the actual craft brewery and tasting room being at 8728 Howard Ave., just north of the Malden Community & Cultural Centre.

Grondin family honours their past through new craft brewery venture

Dwayne, Jen, Cathy, and Greg Grondin are founding GL Heritage Brewing Company at their Century Farm on Howard Ave., near County Road 20. They hope to be open in mid-July.

Greg said the idea was hatched when he and Dwayne were enjoying a craft beer in his garage with Jen pointing out that was in November 2015. Soon after, they purchased a small commercial unit and transferred the garage into a “research and development” facility. The first brew came New Year’s Day 2016 and throughout the year, about 50 batches were produced where the recipes were tested and refined.

“All of our recipes are our own, tried and true,” she said.

The family had to wait as the town updated its Official Plan and zoning bylaw to officially allow the craft brewery but that is now complete with construction in the home stretch at the craft brewery and tasting room. Greg noted in addition to the tasting room itself, the building has two accessible washrooms, a covered patio area, green space outside of it, a view of the brewery, office space and a lab not to mention the actual brewery itself.

In all, the building is roughly 2,800 square feet.

“We’ve been trying to perfect four recipes,” Greg said, with those recipes being Blonde, Rye, California Common and Stout. A fifth recipe is planned for the fall.

“We plan on producing seasonal beers throughout the year,” Jen added.

The Grondin family has spent 150 years on the land, encompassing seven generations, and wanted to do something to further establish themselves on the property.

“It’s special to us to say on Canada’s birthday that we have a Centennial farm property with the same amount of years,” said Jen.

The location is also a good one, they believe, for a craft brewery as it is close to the local wine trail and Amherstburg Farmers Market.

Grondin family honours their past through new craft brewery venture.

Dwayne, Jen, Cathy, and Greg Grondin are founding GL Heritage Brewing Company at their Century Farm on Howard Ave., near County Road 20. They hope to be open in mid-July.

“We thought it would be great to support tourism and further support the town,” said Jen. “We all grew up here and we are proud of the town.”

Dwayne pointed out while their grain is brought in from an Ontario-based producer, the barley is grown on site.

“It makes it a true, on site, agricultural based brewery,” said Jen.

The initial plan is to have people try their product on site and sell it from there, with local businesses also asking about whether they could sell the beer as well.

The town has been very supportive of their plans, the Grondins say, as are local tourism officials. They hope to be open in mid-July with hours being Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m.-5 p.m.

“We are a small, local family business and we are OK with keeping it that way for a while,” said Jen. “We have jobs outside of this and we have to make sure we establish that balance.”

Greg pointed out the name also has a historical tie to it as Heritage Tire was originally known as GL Heritage Motors. Founders included Greg and Dwayne’s father Don Grondin and Paul Lepine. Their logo also depicts Don Grondin and Paul Lepine.

Their website is www.glheritagebrewing.ca and they can also be found on Facebook by searching “GL Heritage Brewing Company.” Their phone number is 519-736-7361.

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