V2V Black Hops to take over Axe & Barrel Brewing Co.

V2V Black Hop Brewing founder Graeme Hafey spent 21 years in the Canadian navy as a pilot, serving in Afghanistan and the Persian Gulf. Rob Mangelsdorf photo

Langford’s Axe & Barrel Brewing Co. will get another lease on life but in a very different form, after being purchased by V2V Black Hops Brewing, a veteran-owned social venture dedicated to supporting military veterans.

We reported last week that Axe & Barrel would be closing its doors this week after five years in the Victoria suburb.

V2V Black Hops founder Graeme Hafey confirmed he would be taking over the space after purchasing Axe & Barrel’s brewing equipment this week. Hafey says he hopes to re-open the tasting room by mid March with a lineup of eight beers.

The tasting room will be getting a facelift and will feature a “bright, modern atmosphere with a military flavour,” with accents of memorabilia.

“We want it to be novel, but not over the top,” Hafey said. “We don’t want it to look like the inside of a MASH tent, we don’t want it to be so hardcore that people aren’t comfortable.”

V2V Black Hops’ brewmaster will be co-owner Duncan Blackman, the former owner of Happy Homebrewers U-brew in Langford, and sales rep with Specific Mechanical brewing and distilling systems.

“He knows this brewhouse front to back, so we’re really happy to have him on board,” said Hafey.

V2V Black Hops is currently contract brewing it beers at Spinnakers Brewpub. In addition to its Victory Ale English bitter and The Brig kolsch, Hafey says they plan to offer a staple of West Coast craft classics with some rotating seasonals to keep it interesting.

“We’re all about quality, authenticity and brewing to style,” he said. “But we’ll take some artistic licence with the rotators.”

Read all about V2V Black Hops and its work to support veterans here.

You may also like