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How Eli Gerskovitch rose from a pub owner to a crafted beer brewery owner

In Canada, a craft brewery is owned by families or are just small, but others have been sold to larger corporations but are still called craft breweries. The first Canadian craft brewery was founded in 1982 in Vancouver known as Horse Bay Brewing. In 1984 came the Spinnakers Brewpub and Vancouver Island Brewery both in 1984 in Victoria. Granville Island Brewery and Brick Brewery of Waterloo were both founded in Vancouver in 1984 among others. They have continued to expand, and craft beer sales increased. By 2015, the sales had increased by almost 36 percent.

Eli Gershkovitch started a crafted beer brewery after a passion for the beer he developed in 1987 when he toured Europe and tasted beer for the first time. This was after pursuing his law degree from the University of Toronto. Eli Gershkovitch decided to make something great out of that taste. He started doing research on craft beer brewing and successfully located a brewpub in Gastown Vancouver. The problem was getting a liquor license, but fortunately, the building had a rare stem heat system which created steam-powered brewing.


In 1995 Eli Gerskovitch opened a Steamworks Brew Pub which had six craft beers. Eli Gerskovitch built a full-scale brewery in Burnaby and a taproom, and it became one of the biggest craft beer breweries. Eli Gershkovitch who is also a pilot and a lawyer designed the labels of the beer in such a way that designs of flying machines would be visible. Steamworks’ customers multiplied, and Eli Gershkovich had to acquire the Rogue kitchen with a sitting capacity of 570 people up from 184. Read more on

Eli Gershkovitch started to sponsor events, and this boosted his business and seven later he started a beer brewery that would produce beer twenty times more than Steamworks pub. Eli Gershkovitch held a party in Gastown pub to celebrate the introduction of bottled beers. Two years since the opening of the brewery, Eli gained full control of the brewery without even board members or stock investors. However, Conrad Gmoser who had previously worked at Steamworks started his brewery, but it continues working with Steamworks. Read more at Release Fact about Eli.

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