Dixie Brewing Company re-opens doors for the first time since Pre-Katrina

Dixie Brewery set to open Saturday in New Orleans East

NEW ORLEANS, La. (WVUE) - The historic New Orleans Dixie Brewery will officially open its doors Saturday.

Those who remember the original location say the rebirth brings a lot of nostalgia and excitement.

"One of the neatest aspects is we have the original newspaper article from Dixie's opening Halloween Day 1907," Dixie General Manager Jim Birch said.

While there are many changes from the original brewery, some things remain the same, like the signage.

"We re-lit it, and there's two more signs upstairs that were on the top of the dome that I'll show you," Birch said.

Unlike its original facility which focused on production, this one is open to the public--with a cafe, bar, outdoor space and even games.

"We have a museum upstairs, second floor. you can see the history of New Orleans over the course of 150 years. How beer has evolved, what brands have done well, what happened to Dixie through prohibition, into consolidation, into Hurricane Katrina," Birch said.

Upstairs is where tours of the production facility will be held.

While most of the machinery is controlled by the push of a button, Dixie created jobs for more than 40 people.

“My grandfather, which is my great great grandfather, he used to work at Dixie when it was on Tulane Avenue. He worked in the brewery area, and pretty much back then, you worked everywhere,” Cabrini Miller said.

New Orleans East residents who work for the brewery look forward to the revenue it will bring.

"We need that here, we do, because the East, after Katrina, everything was slow pace here, but I think by having this place open, it's gonna pump," Miller said.

After being under construction for almost a year, employees say they're ready to open this weekend.

"Very excited. A lot of people have been working hard to get it up and running," Stephen Borutta said.

Customers already started trickling in Wednesday. Some, said it was nostalgic.

"I used to go to the original Dixie many years ago, and that's why it's such a joyous occasion, because we're finally getting Dixie back where it belongs in New Orleans," Michael Giovingo said.

Birch said he hopes the brewery will be a landmark for those visiting New Orleans.

"I mean, if you go to Cafe Du Monde for a beignet, you have to come to Dixie for a beer," Birch said.

The brewery will have its grand opening Saturday starting at 11 a.m. with live music and a second line.

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