It All Revolves Around The Beer!Welcome to Center of the Universe Brewing Company, or COTU for short. We officially began our brewing operations here in Ashland, Virginia November 16th 2012.
The Center of the Universe Brewing Company began back in 2009 when Chris Ray and his brother Phil began brewing beer in their houses. The hobby turned into an obsession, and the obsession has led them to open up a craft brewery in Ashland, Virginia. Located in the heart of Central Virginia, it is affectionately known as “The Center of the Universe”. COTU will be brewing an assortment of ales using only whole ingredients, while sticking to the traditional all-natural method of brewing beer.
The meaning of “Center of the Universe” is important to the founders of COTU. With so much emphasis today on globalization and the lack of corporate stewardship, COTU wanted to be a company that truly embraces the local community. “Center of the Universe,” to COTU, is taking pride in where you live and respecting the people with whom you interact. We believe it is our responsibility to understand and appreciate how our actions affect the community that supports us.
At Center of the Universe Brewing Company it all revolves around the beer and the people who enjoy it.
MEET THE CREW
Chris left Tampa, FL in 2000 to attend the College of William and Mary and pursue a degree in economics while playing for the Tribe’s baseball team. He was drafted by the Baltimore Orioles in 2003, which began his nearly 7 seasons in the MLB. During his playing days, Chris would spend most of the offseason homebrewing. During his stint with the Mariners in 2011, Chris got his first taste of the craft brewing industry as he, along with brother Phil, worked side by side with Fremont Brewing Co. developing what would become an annual and nationwide charitable brew, Homefront IPA. The passion that grew with this project made Chris a devoted believer in the craft brewing industry.
Boston native Mike Killelea is the founder and former Chairman of the Virginia Craft Brewers Guild. Growing up in Massachusetts, Mike was inspired by the New England craft brewing scene and began home-brewing in his small apartment. After moving to Virginia in 2004, Killelea went on to attend the American Brewers Guild’s Craft Brewers Apprenticeship program. Upon completion of the program, Mike joined Legend Brewing Company in January of 2007, and worked his way from an intern to a full-time brewer. Now, as the leader of the COTU brew team, Mike strives to make the highest quality beer through the use of premium ingredients and advanced brewing techniques.