After six years of West Coast brewing, Copenhagen-based craft brewer Mikkeller is ceasing its San Diego production operations. Alongside the brewery, Mikkeller’s adjacent tasting room will also close its doors, the brand shared in an Aug. 22 press release.
The company will contract AleSmith Brewing Company to continue production of its iconic craft beers. Mikkeller holds a longstanding relationship with the San Diego brewery, with collaborative brews dating back as early as 2007.
Mikkeller will “go back to its roots of brewing in the U.S. as a contract brewery” to continue providing its beers to U.S. consumers, say the brand’s reps. Currently, 90 percent of Mikkeller’s global products are already created through contract brewing operations.
“This has been a very hard decision for us to make and comes with a lot of heartache for the Mikkeller employees affected by the closing. The hardships facing the craft beer industry and the economy at large are known to anyone; supply chain issues, rising costs, and unstable market conditions post-pandemic just to name a few,” founder Mikkel Bjergsø states in the release. “Unfortunately, this means that it is just not sustainable anymore to keep operating our San Diego brewery.”
The closure will not affect the brand’s retail locations in San Diego’s Little Italy and San Francisco. Brewing operations in Copenhagen and London will also remain unaffected. Mikkeller is currently seeking a buyer for the now-shuttered 30,000-hectoliter capacity San Diego brewing location and warehouse.
Mikkeller is recognizable for its distinctively Danish designs, playful marketing, and colorful merchandise.
The global brand began in 2003 under the vision of teacher-turned-homebrewer Bjergsø. The craft beer is currently exported to 50 countries worldwide, including numerous restaurants, retailers, and bars operated by Mikkeller.