Sunken City Brewing Company put the Smith Mountain Lake to the test last spring when it opened in Westlake as a craft beer manufacturer reaching neighboring cities of Roanoke, Lynchburg and Danville, Richmond and Virginia Beach. The big question then was if a cultural trend could not just survive, but thrive outside of a more urban setting. Instead of establishing the company in a metropolitan area like Roanoke or Lynchburg, brewery founder Jerome Parnell opted for loyalty to the location that inspired the company’s signature beer, Dam Lager, and the community that he felt would understand and support an emerging cultural trend.
The latest report on Sunken City’s acceptance into the community is that it has been an outstanding success. Laker Weekly newspaper featured the company’s progress in a recent article. The article states Sunken City’s achievements to be above even Parnell’s expectations, increasing its two pallet a week shipments to five pallets, a thriving tap room in the peak tourism summer months and more buzz in the craft beer community than they can keep up with.
Sunken City’s resounding success shows that Smith Mountain Lake is a place where culture, community and craftsmanship are important and appreciated. What more could a family want than a resort-like town that embraces modern amenities like a craft brewery.