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A smiling man presents the hang loose sign with thumb and pinky outstretched

Our Story

We were born on a bike.

The rest is history.

A bike trip through Belgium in 1988 inspired a young couple to bring the flavors of centuries-old Belgian beer to the town of Fort Collins, CO.

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    mobile 1988 june
    mobile 1991 march
    mobile 1900 the early days
    mobile 1991 June
    mobile 1993 october
    mobile 1995 october
    mobile 1999 january
    mobile 2000 early
    mobile 2003 summer
    mobile 2009 august
    mobile 2012 december
    mobile 2016 may
    mobile 2018 summer
    mobile 2019 april
    mobile 2020 jan
    mobile 2020 aug
    mobile 2023 bells integration
    mobile 2023 juice force
    mobile 2023 fat tire
    mobile 2023 daleville integration

June

1988

After a bike trip through Belgium, co-founders Kim Jordan and Jeff Lebesch are inspired to bring Belgian brewing traditions to their hometown.

March

1991

Kim and Jeff install brewing equipment in the basement of their Fort Collins home. They also trek into the Rocky Mountains and establish New Belgium's core values, which were inspired by Kim’s career as a social worker.

The

Early Days

With brewing underway, Kim is New Belgium's jack-of-all-trades as the first bottler, sales rep, distributor, marketer, financial planner and longtime CEO. Kim would eventually scale the brewery into one of the most successful craft breweries in the country, acting as a visionary for both her co-workers and the industry.

June

1991

Kim and Jeff begin test brews of two beers: an amber ale—lovingly named Fat Tire—and a Belgian-style dubbel called “Abbey.” Later that month, both beers are sold for the first time at the Colorado Brewers' Festival.

October

1993

Abbey Ale wins a gold medal in the Specialty Category at the Great American Beer Festival in Denver. At the time, Belgian-style beers were so rare in the craft beer scene that they didn’t even have their own category.

October

1995

Having outgrown the three-year-old production facility, New Belgium relocates a few blocks down the street to our current brewery and taproom location.

Visit Us

January

1999

New Belgium starts off the new year with a new tradition: New Belgium-branded anniversary bikes, beginning with a 1999 Electra cruiser. The tradition of awarding co-workers with a cruiser on their one-year anniversary continues today.

Early

2000

New Belgium's first batch of La Folie Sour Brown Ale, is hand-bottled and sold. This inaugural batch was aged in a collection of French-oak wine barrels. A few months later, the brewery would receive its first batch of two-story French-oak foeders, transforming its sour beer program.

Learn More

Summer

2003

New Belgium creates an in-house sustainability department, which would go on to establish the brewery as a Certified B-Corp and 1% for the Planet member, while spearheading on-site projects like the installation of solar panels and a wastewater treatment facility. The department was inspired by one of New Belgium's core values: we inspire social and environmental change.

Learn More

August

2009

New Belgium implements what at the time is the largest private solar array in the state of Colorado, capable of generating 3% of total electricity needs and 16% of peak load. These efforts continue today.

December

2012

New Belgium becomes 100% employee owned. The ESOP buys the remaining shares from CEO Kim Jordan and her family, and goes from 41.5% ownership to 100% ownership, with a total of 457 co-workers.

May

2016

Just in time for summer, the Asheville brewery opens to the public, bringing the New Belgium experience to the East Coast.

Visit Us

Summer

2018

NPR's How I Built This interviews Kim to explore how she helped take New Belgium from her basement to the nation with her unique business model.

Listen Now

April

2019

Lauren Limbach, our wood cellar director, receives the prestigious Russell Schehrer Award for Innovation in Craft Brewing from the Brewers Association. Learn more about Lauren and her pioneering beers in this episode of the Good Beer Hunting podcast.

Listen Now

January

2020

New Belgium employees vote in favor of Lion Little World Beverage acquiring New Belgium Brewing with a commitment to continuing our “force for good” mission. "We’re excited to welcome New Belgium Brewing into our global family of craft beverage brands. Since meeting the New Belgium team, we’ve been incredibly impressed not just with their commitment to world-class beer and the way they bring their brands to life, but their purpose-led business model and connection to the community – all values we share at Lion,” - Matt Tapper, Managing Director of Lion Little World Beverages.

August

2020

After nearly three decades of striving to reduce our impact, Fat Tire becomes America’s first certified carbon neutral beer.

Learn More

January

2022

Bell’s Brewery joins New Belgium through an acquisition by Lion Little World Beverages – aligning two great American craft brewers. The combination of Bell’s and New Belgium places the expanded company at the top of the U.S. craft beer market in sales volume and growth, adding an extraordinary lineup of brands, including Two Hearted Ale and Oberon Ale.

March

2022

Five years after Voodoo Ranger IPA burst onto the craft beer scene, New Belgium releases Voodoo Ranger Juice Force IPA -- a fruit forward, highly drinkable 9.5% ABV hazy imperial IPA. Juice Force takes off with a bang and becomes the greatest U.S. craft beer launch of all time and kicks off a new fan-favorite lineup, including Fruit Force and Tropic Force.

January

2023

More than 30 years after Fat Tire introduced a generation to craft beer, New Belgium reimagines a classic and debuts a crisper, brighter, and even better Fat Tire to inspire the next generation of beer drinkers. Along with a fresh, new flavor, Fat Tire debuts a bold look that highlights New Belgium’s ongoing commitment to doing right by our planet.

May

2023

New Belgium further expands its production capabilities and acquires a 259,000-square-foot production brewery from Constellation Brands in Daleville, Va. All of the approximately 60 workers are offered a seamless transition to New Belgium employment at equal or greater pay than before. The move helps New Belgium keep up with increased demand for its growing and industry-leading portfolio.

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Past & Present

mobile 1988 june

June

1988
mobile 1991 march

March

1991
mobile 1900 the early days

The

Early Days
mobile 1991 June

June

1991
mobile 1993 october

October

1993
mobile 1995 october

October

1995
mobile 1999 january

January

1999
mobile 2000 early

Early

2000
mobile 2003 summer

Summer

2003
mobile 2009 august

August

2009
mobile 2012 december

December

2012
mobile 2016 may

May

2016
mobile 2018 summer

Summer

2018
mobile 2019 april

April

2019
mobile 2020 jan

January

2020
mobile 2020 aug

August

2020
mobile 2023 bells integration

January

2022
mobile 2023 juice force

March

2022
mobile 2023 fat tire

January

2023
mobile 2023 daleville integration

May

2023