Growlers an option for toting craft beers

2012-09-20T00:00:00Z Growlers an option for toting craft beers Arizona Daily Star
September 20, 2012 12:00 am

Craft-beer enthusiasts have had an easier time getting access to some of their favorite local beers as of late thanks to those little glass jugs known as growlers.

Growler stations are popping up all over the city, providing a new way to get brews that might not otherwise be available in bottles.

The new Total Wine & More opened at Park Place last month with its own growler station.

Maynards Market and Kitchen downtown will provide growler fills starting Saturday.

Tap & Bottle, a mom-and-pop bottle shop that will also serve growlers is set to open by the end of the year at 403 N. Sixth Ave.

And Whole Foods Market's two locations in town at 3360 E. Speedway and 7133 N. Oracle Road have six brews apiece on tap for growlers, including beers from the Four Peaks Brewery in Tempe, the San Tan Brewing Company in Chandler and Dragoon Brewing Company in Tucson.

"We will always have at least one local craft beer available for purchase in growlers," said Whole Foods local marketing supervisor Rachael Florez. "We have great breweries in Arizona and are proud to support them."

The growler growth has been in response to recent changes to state liquor laws.

Once only available in microbreweries, growlers may now be sold at any bar or store that sells beer as long as the containers being filled are one gallon or less, are clean, have the appropriate government-mandated warning labels and are securely sealed.

Growlers do not have to be purchased at the location where they are being refilled. Whole Foods, for example, will refill your growler whether or not the containers were purchased at the store.

Rebecca Safford, owner of Tap & Bottle, said a growler station wasn't part of her original business plan, but when she heard that changes were coming down the pipeline, she saw an opportunity.

Safford plans to make the growler refilling station a significant component of her bottle shop.

"People really have a taste for craft beer in Tucson," she said. "We are seeing it now in a lot of bars and restaurants. It is a good time to have this."

Copyright 2014 Arizona Daily Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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