Gilla Brewing Company is set to open Oct. 26 in Gonzales, staking its claim as the first Ascension Parish-based brewery.
Derek Stewart, who is opening the microbrewery with Bradley Andersen and Alex Shillings, says they’re planning to have a dozen of their beers on tap for opening day, although there is concern some of the beers may not have completed the brewing process before the end of the month. Should that happen, Stewart says their licensing as a microbrewery allows them to stock other breweries’ products and wines.
Two out of the three brewery partners grew up in Ascension, which is what Stewart says inspired the trio to open their business there. They named the brewery after Shilling’s father, Kevin Shillings, a community staple nicknamed Gilla.
Stewart is optimistic they’ll be able to capitalize on their proximity between Baton Rouge and New Orleans to attract traveling beer enthusiasts.
“The more breweries that open in the Capital Region, the more people will come from out of town,” he says.
Customers should expect a frequently rotating batch of brew options. As a microbrewery, the team specializes in small batches. Stewart aims to keep being innovative with new and traditional style brews as they develop new beers.
In the future, he’d like to expand the brewery with larger equipment, allowing Gilla to offer canned releases and some kegs for distribution. From there, if demand requires, Stewart says he could imagine finding a place where they can build a larger facility and host bigger events.
This story originally appeared in Daily Report Oct. 11, 2019. Read the story here.