COURTENAY, BC – What’s Brewing reports that Comox Valley nano-brewery Forbidden Brewing has been locked out due to a dispute with its landlord, The Westerly Hotel, which has in turn led to a boycott of beer sales to The Westerly’s Flying Canoe Pub by other local breweries.
According to the article, Forbidden Brewing signed a “sweetheart deal” lease in 2014 of just over $700 per month with a representative of the hotel. The original lease ran until 2017, with options to extend to 2019 and 2022.
The hotel was sold to Synergy Properties Ltd. in 2017, at which point Forbidden co-owner Michael Vincent “started to feel that there were signs that the hotel was no longer pleased with the lease arrangement, and that the direction the hotel’s new owners wished to go with the property was quite different from what he felt had prevailed before.”
A series of legal battles between the hotel and brewery have followed, with the most recent developments being the following:
On November 2nd 2017, Courtney Lodge Ltd. filed a new notice of civil claim, suing Forbidden for allegedly causing “discomfort and inconvenience” via noxious fumes from its beer-making operations. Since then, on February 8th, the landlord posted a Notice of Termination stating that the lease has been cancelled, outlining a number of reasons including $1,982 owed in back rent. A bailiff then padlocked the brewery, apparently temporarily turning off its power (there have been disputed utility expenses in the past).
For more details, including links to many legal documents and other material, as well as the press release announcing the Flying Canoe boycott, see the full What’s Brewing article.