December 02, 2007

Bye, bye Bison

Bison Brewing began making beer in Berkeley, CA in 1989. The brewery was, until last week, located at the corner of Telegraph Avenue and Parker Street. In 2003, Bison closed their brewpub (the space now houses an Indian/Pakistani restaurant and a coffee shop). All that is left of Bison is the logo above the cafe. The sign above the brewery is gone. Bison has moved to 3rd and Linden Street in Oakland. Linden Street also hosts Linden Street Brewing, Oakland's second brewpub after Pacific Coast Brewing Company in Old Oakland.

Note the boarded window. The brew equipment could not fit through the door. On two separate occasions last week, I saw equipment being removed from the old storefront. According to the East Bay Express, Linden Brewing owner, Adam Lamoreaux, purchased a brew plant from Bison to brew his yeasty beer, Urban People's Common Lager.


  1. I'm the Bison owner, Dan Del Grande. I outgrew my Berkeley location and have moved to a brewery co-op I started with another guy in Chico CA. The City of Berkeley wouldn't let me keep the small pilot system in Berkeley without operating a restaurant (zoning law), so I sold the small brew system to Adam, who is starting his own new biz in Oakland. Adam is a good guy and I think of his new brewery as an incubator, but it is financially totally independent of me. I still brew the beer, but now in Chico, and YOU can still buy it in supermarkets, just like you have been doing for years!

  2. Dan:

    Thank you for the comment. It is good to get clarification on where Bison will be brewed.

    The City of Berkeley has "interesting" zoning laws. Hopefully change is afoot given the recent out-migration on long-time enterprises.

    Anyway, I purchase Bison from the local Andronico's. My favorite brew is the Belgian Ale.

    Will you be using a different source for your hops and other ingredients?

  3. All my ingredient sources will remain the same. Andronico's is a great local grocer. Thanks.

    I think of my co-op up there like a newspaper printing press. Independent editorial staffs/creative (brewer, me)/sales/marketing...but the same skilled pressmen/women operating a printing press that prints two dozen different newspapers each week.

    If you know of any local opportunities to bring Bison back down here, let me know. My contract up there in Chico is only through Feb 09.

  4. I am a big fan of Bison; I particularly like the IPA and Chocolate Stout. Too bad they left Berkeley (seems like lots of small manufacturers have left Berkeley in the last five years -- Clif Bar being another example). But at least the beer is still being made!