BALTIMORE COUNTY, Md. (WJZ) — For the first time in more than 60 years, Guinness has opened a brewery in the U.S., and it's housed in Baltimore County.
Many glasses were raised to commemorate the opening of Guinness Open Gate Brewery & Barrel House Thursday — the first U.S. home for Guinness since 1954.
Gov. Larry Hogan marked the opening with a ribbon-cutting ceremony ahead of the brewery opening its doors to the public on Friday.
"I try to do everything I can to support this company and this industry, one beer at a time," Hogan said.
The Guinness ambassador is a Baltimore native.
"This is such an incredible town. The heritage, the history, the people that live in this town, the people I've grown up with. We deserve a company like Guinness investing the amount of money, creating the kind of jobs and giving us a place where 300,000 people are going to come from all over the country to visit," said Brewery Ambassador Ryan Wagner.
More to the point is where the brewery is going.
"This is an amazing day. If you roll the clock back just a couple years ago, we had a plant that was closing, we had 150 people we were trying to find new jobs for," said Will Anderson with the Baltimore County Economic Development.
Now, Guinness has created several hundred jobs — and more than a business, a place to be.
The brewery is expected to be a "world-class" visitor center, featuring taproom tastings, fine dining at its restaurant, a gift shop and opportunities to tour the brewery and learn about the history of Guinness.
It will also brew Guinness Blonde American Lager for national sales in the U.S. and Canada, and it will brew new beers for on-site sales, which will be influenced by both American and Maryland brewing tradition.
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