Then-Mayor Michael Nutter taps a cask of ESA at the inaugural Philly Beer Week's Opening Tap Ceremony. August 29th marks the date of the first batch brewed at the new Delaware Avenue location. The brewers toil for 14 hours straight in 105-degree heat. For perspective, it takes Yards brewers about 5 hours to brew that same amount of beer today. On October 29th, Yards celebrates their first day of bottling in the new digs. It’s ESA, of course. The following day, the Phillies win the World Series and Yards celebrates by handing out ESAs during the Championship Parade.
The Philadelphia Phillies win the World Series and Yards makes the next day a company-wide holiday.
Yards wins the Royal Stumble (a Philly Beer Week event) at Nodding Head Brewery and brewer Tim Roberts justifies his employment. Love Stout is released for the first time on nitro. On August 23rd, Yards wrangles Trevor Prichett as Chief Operating Officer and removes the cat from the office. Cape of Good Hope double IPA, a "happy little accident," is introduced. A brewer incorrectly dry hops Yards IPA but instead of dumping the batch, the brewers see it through to the end. They love what they taste - et voila - Cape is born!
Kellogg's drops Michael Phelps after a photo of him smoking weed goes viral.
The Tasting Room opens and Philly’s own Johnny Carwash begins conducting brewery tours. Yards is voted Green Business of the Year by the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce. ESA takes the bronze medal at the World Beer Cup. Yards concludes the year having brewed 14,800 barrels, briefly distinguishing them as the largest microbrewery in the United States.
The iPad debuts and Yards becomes the first craft brewery with an iPad app.
On September 3rd, Yards exceeds the 15,000-barrel mark and becomes a Regional Craft Brewer in the eyes of the Brewer’s Association. Kind of a big deal! Yards One, the original 3.5-barrel system, is brought back to life. It’s used to test new beers and brew small batches and can still be seen in action today from the Tasting Room.
Prince William and Kate Middleton get hitched.
Frank Rio falls like a star from the sky and teams up with The Rick to launch the sales department to new heights. Philadelphia Magazine’s Best of Philly Awards names Philadelphia Pale ale it’s Best Beer of 2012. Yards takes home the Great American Beer Festival’s bronze medal in the ESB category for Extra Special Ale.
Gangnam Style goes mega viral and several Yards employees learn a new dance move, unfortunately.
Yards plays host to Iron Hill, Nodding Head, Flying Fish and Victory’s brewmasters as they team up to brew Brotherly Suds, a collaboration beer for Philly Beer Week. In March, Yards’ musically-inclined staff unite to create supergroup, Yeast Factory, and win the first Band of Brewers competition at World Café Live. Proceeds from the event go to Philadelphia’s Ronald McDonald House. In the fall of 2013, Yards teams up with the Tyanna Foundation to throw the first PYNK Affair, raising $5k for their new breast cancer charity partner. Chocolate Love Stout is released for the first time. Yards medals in two categories at the Great American Beer Festival – a bronze for Poor Richard’s Tavern Spruce in the Indigenous Ale category and a silver for Brawler in the English Mild category.
Bitcoin becomes a thing.
Yards continues to expand with the addition of a bright tank cellar, a parking lot for the Tasting Room and the installation of a hop wall and pollinator garden on the front exterior of the brewery. They invent a new holiday to celebrate beer and trees – Arbrew Day – where they team up with Tree Philly to give away free trees and beer throughout Philly. Todd Carmichael, co-owner of La Colombe Coffee Roasters, invites Tom to Iceland to brew a collaboration beer with Einstok Brewery. The result is Snorri’s Awakening, a chipper coffee pale ale available for a short time, but well-loved while it lasts. At the Philly Beer Scene Awards, Tom Kehoe is honored as Humanitarian of the Year and Love Stout is named Best Dark Beer.
The Ice Bucket Challenge takes over.
More fermenters are installed to keep up with growing demand, and the brewery’s capacity reaches 55,000 barrels. Love Stout is bottled for the first time (except for that one time in 2008) and enters the Signature Ales Variety Pack. PYNK wins Best Fruit Beer at the Philly Beer Scene Awards. Yards collaborates with Baltimore’s Heavy Seas to create Philtimore, an English pale ale, for SAVOR in Washington, D.C. During Thanksgiving week, Yards launches their Brew Unto Others campaign, highlighting the brewery’s commitment to working hard, having fun and giving back to the community. Yards closes the books on 2015 having brewed 41,500 barrels.
David Letterman’s reign as Late Show host ends after over 30 years.
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