The Massachusetts craft brewery landscape continues to change. In surprising news posted on Jack’s Abby Craft Lagers social media, the Framingham brewery has announced the purchase of Worcester’s Wormtown Brewery. The sale is not expected to be official until early this summer.

Also indicated in the post is that the “Wormtown taprooms will remain in Worcester and Foxborough (Patriot Place), now with additional resources and support from Jack’s Abby. Only Wormtown products will be served at Wormtown locations.”

Wormtown originally started in the former Peppercorn’s Ice Cream Factory on Park Ave in Worcester on St.Patrick’s Day in 2010. Founders Ben Roesch (who recently left to open Murder Hill Brewery & Taproom) and Tom Oliveri came together to open the brewery with plans to brew with local ingredients and to cater to the local community and its drinkers. The brewery grew quickly in popularity and won numerous medals for their beer including at GABF World Cup. The ubiquitous Be Hoppy IPA has been a staple in New England taplines and on store shelves for well over a decade. We’ve certainly drank our share.

In 2015 Wormtown moved to their new home on Shrewsbury Street to increase production and establish a taproom. An additional small brewery and taproom would follow at Patriot Place in Foxboro.

According to the announcement from Jack’s Abby, the Wormtown brand will fall under the newly created “Hendler Family Brewing Co.” Which is “dedicated to fostering long-term growth and prosperity within the Massachusetts brewing landscape and that includes keeping beloved brands like Wormtown going strong.” Jack’s Abby was recently named a Top 50 U.S. producing craft brewery and this acquisition will only add to that total.

Within the last year we’ve seen the purchase of Wachusett Brewing (founded in 1994) by Finest Kind LLC (parent company of Smuttynose), Ipswich Ale Brewery (1991) become a contract brand at RiverWalk Brewing, Newburyport Brewing (2012) being produced at Ipswich and subsequently Dorchester Brewing and the creation of the Tasty Liquid Alliance which brought together Aeronaut Brewing with Dorchester Brewing. We have realized for a while this seismic shift was happening for local craft beer in Massachusetts which is mirroring what we’ve seen across the country, but it doesn’t make it any easier to see these Bay State legacy brands undergo these changes…and we know more will happen.

Cheers Wormtown, thanks for the beer and memories – We raise a glass to you 🍺

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