Our tagline says it all: Friends and Beer. We’ve always thought they pair well together. We appreciate the support of many close friends who have helped us along the way, and we look forward to making many new ones in the weeks to come.
Phil Buchy

Like many people, Phil Buchy (a.k.a. “Big Phil”) is always in search of a good time.  Prior to becoming a Master Brewer, he went to college to play football and study engineering.  He found the slamming into people part to be a kick, but the studying part wasn’t quite as much fun.

After getting out of school, Phil put his engineering degree to work in the construction field.  While that job paid the bills, working construction wasn’t always so much fun either.  That got Big Phil to thinking: as best as he could remember, his best moments weren’t related to playing sports, solving equations, crunching numbers, or walking around job sites with a tape measure and a pocket protector.

Big Phil realized that nearly all of his best memories revolved around beer and friends in one way or another.  One could say that sharing good beer with great friends became Big Phil’s higher calling.  Legion Brewing – Friends and Beer – is the result…

(Photo Credit: Shot By Ash and Scott)

Newton Craver

Newton Craver was born in a small town;  he could breathe in a small town.  He worked for a community bank in that small town, and everything about the whole place was good enough for him.

Then one day, some folks from the big town came along and bought up Newton’s hometown bank.  No longer a fixture of the local community, he soon realized the new regime would provide him with little opportunity.

It was around that time when Newton ran into a Master Brewer long on dreams, but short on cash.  Knowing a thing or two about financing small companies from his days in the banking business, Newton decided that he was just the partner for that big ol’ brewhouse dreamer.  More importantly, he’d made a new friend in Big Phil, one of many that Newton is sure to make at Legion Brewing – Friends and Beer…

Bill Craver

Anyone who knows Bill Craver can imagine that he was psyched to learn that one of his cousins was opening a microbrewery.  Not surprisingly, Bill was quick to offer Newton some advice on starting a business.  To be fair, Bill’s words came along with the caveat that Newton should be wary of friends and family coming to him with unsolicited ideas.

Apparently, Newton took this part of Bill’s message to heart, because it was months before Bill so much as heard back from his cousin.  Undeterred, Bill showed up periodically at the job site to check on progress with the renovation, each time offering to lend a hand.  As it turned out, Newton and the rest of the Legion crew were far more interested in Bill’s lending of a hand than they had been in listening to his MBA teachings. In fact, Phil and Newton continued to welcome Bill’s hand lending, concluding that they liked having him around, which he is still doing to this day…

 

Scott Griffin

Scott is a North Carolina native, growing up in this area and attending Appalachian State University. While studying in Boone, he developed an interest in home brewing and availed himself of the mountain region’s burgeoning Craft Beer scene.

While managing a restaurant, Scott began volunteering at a brewery, Ass Clown, to dive deeper into beer. Pretty soon, they hired Scott on full time as a member of their brew staff, giving him a chance to further hone his craft. A diligent and creative brewer, Legion Brewing is fortunate to have had Scott on board since its opening.

A self-diagnosed hop head, Scott’s favorite Legion beer to date is the Nectarine IPA, ‘Naughty by Nectar.’

Patrick Lodge

These days, in addition to performing yoeman’s work in the brew house, Patty heads up our laboratory work — monitoring yeast activity, active cell counts and the like. If you ask Patty, his favorite aspect of Legion’s operation is our barrel-ageing program, which encompasses an interesting blend of art, science and even mystery. From this program emerged Patty’s favorite beer to date, ‘The Devonian’ which was a Barleywine aged for a period of months in white oak, whiskey barrels.

And as everyone can plainly see, when Patty rests his head, it is to dream sweet dreams of delicious IPA’s…

Brittany Herier

While Brittany started her life in nearby Kings Mountain, those hills could not contain her. The first time she up and left was to attend the University of Kentucky – primarily for the basketball.  While there, Brittany studied journalism and Public Relations, but mostly recalls painting herself blue for the home games. (If anyone sends pictures, we’re totally posting them!)Once out of school, Brittany started to feel restless again. Naturally, she decided that feeling restless on Waikiki beach would be better than harboring similar feelings in other places – so she up and moved! Pretty soon, South Korea beckoned and she found herself there, followed by a backpacking journey across Southeast Asia.

As she does from time to time, Brittany eventually moved back Stateside. Along with a partner, she opened up a Wings Etc, where she learned everything there is to know about the restaurant business. But alas, that certain itch that is the ‘Traveling Jones’ returned. This time, scratching it required a walkabout to India, Europe, Kenya and South America…

For the moment, Brittany is back in North Carolina and planting roots with us, running the office here at Legion Brewing. We feel extremely lucky to have her for as long as we can hold her attention! But if she up and disappears someday, we’re pretty sure we won’t know where to start looking for her. You see, Brittany’s world is a pretty large place…

Brittany Smith

Born and raised in southwest Virginia, off of the Blue Ridge Parkway, Brittany is the oldest of six kids. Her maternal instinct is on ready display in the taproom, always taking care of business, customers and her fellow employees.

A big fan of Carolina Panthers, Brittany also enjoys cooking and baking, gardening, exploring new restaurants in Charlotte, and outdoor concerts. Her favorite Legion beer is Juicy Jay, which she believes is best enjoyed during a patio day-drinking session while listening to Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers.

James Rutledge

When James isn’t brewing up Legion beer or kegging off Juicy Jay, he can be found mountain biking, fly fishing and travelling.

His favorite style of beer is anything Sour, which he particularly enjoys while listening to Pandora (preferably on the Mumford and Sons station). James is also an avid home brewer, even challenging members of our brew staff with his extensive beer knowledge.

 

Cory Myers

Like his brother Alex, Cory grew up in Raleigh prior to moving to Boone to attend Appalachian State University. He studied for a degree in Computer Information Services and didn’t waste any time in putting some of these skills to work. During his time in Boone, he worked for the Township, helping it organize and manage various concerts and events.

But if you speak with Cory about his college experiences, he’s likely to spend most of the time telling you about how living in the mountains helped him cultivate a love of fly fishing. Alongside fellow students, Cory explored numerous rivers, creeks and streams in NC and in neighboring States. After graduating, Cory tested his fly fishing skills in a salt water arena, fishing for Grouper and Jacks in the Bahamas.

With a brother on staff at Legion Brewing, Cory decided to move to Charlotte in October of 2017 to be a member of our Distribution Team. When asked what the most suprising thing has been about his time at Legion, Cory states, “It’s interesting to see just how much beer goes out from Legion, as well as where it goes to. As a relatively new brewery, I wouldn’t think that many people would suspect how many places around town are carrying Legion beer…”

 

 

Jordan Coley

Jordan is an alumni of Johnson and Wales University who has called North Carolina home for his entire life. He loves travelling from the coast to the mountains, often hiking and back packing along the way. Jordan has a green thumb, which has come in handy as we begin planting our raised bed and hop garden! His favorite Legion beer is our easy-drinking Freedom Park Pale Ale.

Warm and welcoming, Jordan can often be heard shouting “Freedom” from behind the bar in his own signature style…

 

Charles’ favorite beer style is Saison, which was made quite evident by the sheer number of Midwood Mule growlers Charles made off with this past Spring.

 

 

Russell Derby

Despite having been born right here in Charlotte, Russell spent most of his early years living in Upstate New York. After high school, Russell moved to Sarasota, Florida where he worked in various aspects of the hospitality industry for almost ten years.

In 2009, Russell returned to Charlotte to pursue culinary studies at Johnson & Wales. Degree in hand, he worked as a chef at various restaurants across the Queen City. In a move that may have foreshadowed his future role at Legion Brewing, Russell took on the responsibility of managing the bar at a popular Plaza Midwood hangout. Looking to get deeper into Craft Beer, he subsequently took a job with Mystery Brewing, initially as a Sales Representative, and later as a Sales Manager.

These days, Russell can be seen all over town rep’ing Legion, while slinging beers to a long list of restaurants and bars. When he’s not doing beer-related stuff, Russell enjoys hanging around Plaza Midwood with his wife and young daughter.

 

Sara Zagar

Yet another native Charlottean, Sara developed an interest in craft beer alongside the growing brewery scene in the Queen City over the past 5-10 years. One of her favorite occasions to enjoy a good, cold craft beer is while spending time with her Dad playing backgammon.

In her spare time, Sara loves to spend time outdoors – she considers herself a plant nerd, always checking out the flora and the fauna.  Sara enjoys spending time at the Whitewater Center, listening to live music and drinking a beer while watching rafters and kayakers navigate the rapids. Outside of Charlotte, Sara enjoys going to music festivals and traveling to new places that are off the beaten path, like Costa Rica.

If you ask Sara, the aspect that attracted her to Legion was the welcoming, homey vibe found in the Taproom.  While working at Zada Janes, she found Legion to be a great place to meet with friends and have a beer in a relaxed, comfortable setting. For a long time now, Sara’s favorite Legion beer has been Juicy Jay – shocker!

 

Alex Myers

After spending his childhood in Raleigh, Alex attended Appalachian State University where he earned a degree in Economics. Following college, he moved to Charlotte to join a management training program with Enterprise Rent-A-Car. While there, Alex rotated through a number of roles, including account relations, inventory controls, and branch management. He learned a lot of things on the job, including the realization that the Corporate World might not contain his ideal career track.

All of us at Legion are pleased that Alex came to this conclusion and decided to join our team. After a brief stint learning the distribution side of the business as a delivery driver, Alex joined the sales team. We’ve tasked Alex with growing our account base in points north, which he has embraced wholeheartedly. According to Alex, his favorite aspect of this role is the ability to spread the Legion love to people all around the city.

In his free time, Alex enjoys listening to music, cooking, and making kombucha. That said, his hands-down, favorite activity is rock climbing. He trains locally at Inner Peaks, and makes frequent, weekend climbing getaways to challenging walls in Kentucky, Tennessee and West Virginia – often packing a Legion growler to go. Alex’s favorite brew to bring along is Carolina Sparkle Party – undressed, that is.

Daniel Mitchem

After spending the first part of his life in a small town along the Virginia border, Daniel left the friendly confines of this enclave to join a touring band. Playing guitar and bass guitar (and sometimes vocals), Daniel and his band mates enjoyed life on the road, belting out punk rock tunes up and down the East Coast.

Leaving the rock and roll world behind, Daniel followed his wife Kelly across the country, as she had landed a job in Seattle. While there, they both enjoyed hiking and exploring the Pacific Northwest region. Daniel also got seriously exposed to the Craft Beer Revolution, eventually deciding that he’d like to work in the industry.

When his family relocated to Charlotte, Daniel took a job with Crafty Beer Guys installing and maintaining draft lines. We got to know Daniel through his side gig as a member of Legion’s Event Staff and hired him full time in short order. While we’re not super big on titles at Legion, Daniel fills the role of our cellar master / load master, keeping the warehouse organized and making sure beer deliveries run smoothly. And of course, Daniel also helps us keep our draft lines and jockey boxes flowing…

Richmond Lutz

Early on in Richmond’s baseball career, he earned the nickname, “Clutch Lutz” from his teammates for always coming through in the biggest moments.  When architectural designs for Legion Brewing called for features that sounded awesome in theory, but had never actually been built by humankind in reality, Phil and Newton knew exactly whose number to call.  They flashed the proverbial ‘Hit’ sign to Clutch Lutz and told him to swing for the fences.

Anyone who has visited Legion’s Taproom will immediately see that Richmond did a great job on the reclaimed-wood ceiling, as well as on Legion’s custom bar top. Then again, if you’ve already come to see us, there’s a good chance that Richmond, somewhat of a talker, has already told you the whole story himself…

More recently, when Legion was ready to start selling beer around town, we first looked to Richmond to tackle that undertaking.  He has done a great job slinging kegs around town, starting with Plaza Midwood and expanding out from there. If you happen to spot a Legion beer on tap at one of your favorite watering holes from Noda to Matthews, there’s a good chance Richmond may have arranged for it to be there.