Penguin City Brewing Partners With Heidelberg Distributing

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Penguin City Brewing Co. has signed a deal with Heidelberg Distributing Co. to deliver its beer throughout Ohio.

The move is the next step in the brewer’s effort to expand its market reach in the state, co-owner Aspasia Lyras-Bernacki said in a news release. Heidelberg will distribute all of the brewery’s products in Ohio, effective immediately.

Penguin City had been self-distributing its products in Ohio. It already had a distribution contract with another company to deliver its beer in Pennsylvania.

Lyras-Bernacki said the time is right for partnering with a statewide distributor.

“We worked extremely hard self-distributing and learned a lot about this crucial part of the beer industry,” Lyras-Bernacki said. “We know it is time for the next step in our journey.”

Lyras-Bernacki said the brewery is eager to grow its presence “in our own backyard” and into other markets in the state.

“We have been waiting for this moment for quite some time, and now it’s finally here,” she said.

Penguin City beer is already sold in more than 400 bars, restaurants and stores.

Penguin City opened its 32,000-square-foot brewery-taproom-events center in downtown Youngstown last year. The $5 million project involved renovating a former steel products warehouse and installing brewing equipment.

Penguin City has a brewing capacity of 5,000 barrels per year and is likely the Mahoning Valley’s largest beer producer.

Founded in 2018 by Lyras-Bernacki and her husband, brewmaster Richard Bernacki, the company’s products include its flagship Penguin City, Penguin City Light and a rotating menu of seasonal brews.

Heidelberg Distributing was founded in Dayton in 1938. The company has branch locations in at least nine cities in Ohio and Kentucky, including Youngstown, and services more than 267,000 retail and industrial locations in Ohio and Kentucky.

“Richard and Aspasia have built a wonderful brewery, and we are so happy they put their trust in us to grow their brand,” said Paul Gause, spokesman for Heidelberg Distributing.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.