To support the growth of its beverage co-packing business, Bishop Cider has acquired Wild Acre Brewing in Fort Worth, Legal Draft Beer Co. in Arlington, and has secured properties for new entertainment concepts in Dallas, Arlington, and two in Fort Worth.
TexBev, a beverage co-packing company owned by Bishop Cider, will relocate operations from Dallas to Wild Acre’s Fort Worth facility and expand its capacity and capabilities with the addition of the equipment from Bishop’s Dallas cidery and Legal Draft’s Arlington brewery. At the Fort Worth site, there is ample room for continued expansion, as the property comprises nearly 200,000 square feet of warehouse space and sits on 21 acres. The acquisition is expected to close by the end of May.
Bishop will also be opening a one-of-a-kind entertainment concept at the site and details will be revealed in the fall.
Wild Acre beer will continue to be produced at the facility, but the brand will be getting a refresh, investments will be made in QA/QC equipment, and recipes will be fine-tuned. Grant Wood is coming alongside the new management team to ensure the liquid is world class. Grant Wood was most recently the Co-Founder and Brewmaster of Revolver Brewing, prior to the acquisition by Molson Coors in 2016. Previously, Grant spent 16 years at Boston Beer Company, finishing there as the Senior Brewing Manager.
Bishop currently operates three locations of its Cidercade concept (Dallas, Austin, and Houston). Cidercade has dozens of taps of Bishop Cider, serves artisan food, and offers an “entertainment buffet” where patrons pay a nominal admission fee and the games and activities are free to play.
Construction is currently underway on Cidercade Fort Worth, located just south of downtown. It will be the largest Cidercade to date at 25,000 square feet and is expected to open by the end of summer.
Bishop acquired Legal Draft’s assets for the equipment, as new equipment lead-times have grown exponentially in recent years. Bishop did not assume their liabilities and will not market beer bearing the Legal Draft brand. Bishop will, however, be opening a Cidercade location at the Arlington property around the end of the year, bringing the total number of Bishop’s locations to seven.
Bishop has also decided to relocate and drastically expand Cidercade Dallas, but it will remain open at its current location until construction has been completed at the new site. At 79,000 square feet, the new location is nearly 10 times larger. It will feature concepts, games, and activities that aren’t offered anywhere else in Texas. The opening date has not been announced.
When Bishop Cider started in Dallas’ Bishop Arts District a decade ago, Joel Malone and Laura Malone (husband and wife Co-Founders) owned a quaint 700 square foot cider bar, but Bishop has now grown into a leader in beverage manufacturing and beverage experiences.
Their business now comprises three brands:
- TexBev provides beverage co-packing services for its clients with a focus on specialized processes such as tunnel pasteurization, hot fill, and retort sterilization. TexBev is a co-packer of canned cold brew coffee, tea, juice, energy drinks, wine, beer, and RTDs.
- Cidercade has dozens of taps of Bishop Cider, serves artisan food, and offers an “entertainment buffet” where patrons pay a nominal admission fee and the games and activities are free to play.
- Bishop Cider, the company’s house brand of hard cider, is currently sold and distributed in Texas, Oklahoma, and select states in the northeast.
Once the new locations come online, Bishop Cider will operate over 300,000 square feet of real estate, have seven locations, and employ approximately 265 employees (currently 140). Bishop has averaged over 100% revenue growth YOY, sustained profitability even in 2020 when entertainment venues were closed due to the pandemic, and welcomed nearly one million customers through Cidercade locations in 2021.
For brands or individuals looking to start or scale their beverage business through co-packing and manufacturing, go to TexBev.com.
Cidercade Dallas (current): 2777 Irving Blvd #200, Dallas, TX 75207 Cidercade Dallas (future): 1555 Regal Row, Dallas, TX 75247 Cidercade Fort Worth: 1813 W Bowie St., Fort Worth, TX 76110
Wild Acre Brewing: 1734 E El Paso St., Fort Worth, TX 76102
Legal Draft: 500 E Division St., Arlington, TX 76011