Vegan, Animal Advocacy-Focused Sanctuary Brewing to Open in North Carolina

Courtesy of Sanctuary Brewing Company

Courtesy of Sanctuary Brewing Company

On a list of things human beings are wild about, beer and animals would probably make the top five. So, combining the two makes perfect sense, and that’s the premise of Sanctuary Brewing Company, a soon-to-open brewery in Hendersonville, North Carolina (just outside Asheville).

Dreamed up by co-owners Lisa McDonald and Joe Dinan, the brewery is all about saving lives with good drinks and tasty eats. Sanctuary’s beers and food will be 100% vegan, and the company will be supporting local animal rescue and advocacy organizations through events, promotions and more.

“We had been toying with the idea of opening a brewery for awhile,” McDonald tells Latest Vegan News. “Joe has been brewing for about eight years and it’s his passion and he’s very talented. Over that same period of time, we’ve been adopting, fostering and rescuing animals, and realized we could combine these two passions by opening a brewery completely dedicated to animal advocacy.  As a result, we will always be 100% cruelty free and vegan.”

The 4,000+ square foot space will include a brewery, tap room and event space. Sanctuary will be hosting all kinds of animal-friendly events, from adoptable pet nights to yoga with cats, as well as offering promotions that support animals in need, like a Thanksgiving beer special to sponsor a turkey at a local rescue. Through these and other endeavors, the brewery will be working to support lots of local animal advocacy groups, including the Asheville Humane Society, the Blue Ridge Humane Society, Brother Wolf Animal Rescue, Full Circle Farm Sanctuary and Charlie’s Angels Animal Rescue, and more.

Dinan, the brewer, will be making small batch, artisanal ales, including an IPA (Hop Pig, 7.2% ABV), a Berliner Weisse (Hendo Weisse, 3.5%) and a Coffee Stout (Weekend Joe, 6.5% ABV). They’ll also offer guest beers from other brewers in the region, plus a tap devoted to cider.

As far as food: “We’ll carry Roots Hummus  and a few other items from Hendersonville Co Op, who makes an amazing cashew tofu spread and a vegan pimento cheese dip,” says McDonald. “All of these items will be pre-packaged and sold with crackers as light snacks. We’ll also do a Taco Tuesday with plant meats from No Evil Foods, and finally we will sell a tempeh bbq sandwich with two vegan sides from Mo’s Barbeque, who is next door (we’ll call it the sanctuary special).”

Sanctuary is already making a major name for itself — self-proclaimed “animal avenger” Ricky Gervais recently Tweeted: “Love the idea of . A micro brewery dedicated to animal welfare.”

The brewery is tentatively scheduled to open later this month, though the exact date has yet to be announced. You can follow Sanctuary’s progress on Facebook.

If you’d like to support Sanctuary Brewing Company, you can contribute via GoFundMe.


Hannah Sentenac, Editor-in-Chief

Hannah Sentenac, Editor-in-Chief

A wizard of words, lover of all living things and vegan mac 'n cheese master, Hannah is the Editor-In-Chief and Founder of Her writing has appeared in Live Happy magazine, the Miami New Times,,, and numerous other publications and websites. She's obsessed with vegan pizza and crop tops, and is totally addicted to the outdoors. You can reach Hannah directly at

4 Responses

  1. Nicholas says:

    Let us know when you will be expanding and sell the brew in NYC will def’n support you guys.

  2. karin yates says:

    So awesome and exciting! Not many people realize that many/most beers (and wine) are fined with gelatin, egg whites, or isinglass (

  1. December 6, 2015

    […] activists will soon open up Sanctuary Brewing Company in NC, pledged to be 100% cruelty free and to host all kinds of animal rights events. [Photo: […]

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