The annual kickoff network meeting was held at Stable Craft Brewery, which included a tour of the brewery and the new bottling facility. Owner Craig Nargi conducted the tour.
The Evolution of Hermitage Hill Farm and Stable Craft Brewing
Stable Craft Brewing is a fresh chapter in an ongoing entrepreneurial story that began with the founding of Hermitage Hill Farm and Stables in 2006. The business started with the purchase of an operational horse farm, Waynesboro Stables, as it was originally known, that raised and trained Tennessee Walkers. The property contained a massive 288-foot barn which enabled the main aisle to accommodate the riding and training of walking and pleasure horses.
Even though they started primarily as a horse boarding facility, owners Craig and Nikki Nargi had a vision of incorporating the farm and upscale barn into an event venue for weddings, receptions, private parties, and corporate events, while also preserving the rural landscape. At the time, the concept of agritourism was in its infancy, and a great deal of groundwork was needed to bring legislation in line with the reality of accommodating visitors at many of the beautiful agricultural settings available in the Shenandoah Valley. Craig took the Hermitage Hill plans to Richmond and was instrumental in the passing of new legislation allowing tourism activities for agribusinesses.
Starting off primarily as a horse boarding facility, the Nargis slowly began the renovations of the barn. Their plan was to convert an indoor space into a reception room. Painstakingly, they worked with local artisans to create spaces that reflected the rustic craftsmanship of a barn with hand-hewed beams and timber structures reminiscent of barn building, all-the-while introducing the amenities necessary to hosting large events. Heat and air-conditioning, piped-in music, upgraded plumbing, and wiring to create space that reflects conference facilities. Hermitage Hill opened its doors to hosting weddings and events in 2008 and each year, renovations to improve the facility have come about to meet the demands of discriminating clientele.
The farm’s rousing success with weddings and events, as well as the rise in craft beer popularity, especially farm breweries, inspired the Nargis to add a tap room and agri-pub style brewery restaurant to their on-the-farm offerings. From the scenic, authentic setting, to the horses, to the hops fields, to the inside look at the brewing process, and to the enjoyment of the farm-fresh craft beer results – every detail has been meticulously preserved so that visitors to Hermitage Hill Farm and Stable Craft Brewing get the finest farm and brewery experience possible