Diamond Bear Brewing Company
An internationally-awarded world-class craft brewery in Little Rock
Arkansas’ first production brewery, Diamond Bear Brewing Company was founded in Little Rock by Russ and Sue Melton in September of 2000. Russ is an Arkansas native and first realized his passion for discovering regional beers while serving in the Army and living in Bavaria, Germany for many years. When he returned home, Russ decided Arkansas was desperately in need of its own beer.
The name he decided on is as distinctive as the beer his family produces. Diamond Bear comes from the fact that Arkansas is the only state with a diamond mine and that Arkansas once had such a large bear population that it was known as the Bear State. Combined, these two Arkansas facts have created a unique and distinctly Arkansan name for the small family brewery.
The Diamond Bear craft beers are all produced in the old time-honored traditional methods of European brewers, following the German Purity Law of 1516. This means Diamond Bear only uses true beer ingredients: water, hops, yeast and barley. Brewing it locally and using strictly Arkansan water means these beers are also fresh and naturally flavorful.
Keeping it in the family, Russ and Sue Melton hired nephew Jesse Melton as their Brew Master, and their son John serves as the Operations Manager. Together, the Meltons have built a very successful brand that honors the heritage of Arkansas. Since its founding, Diamond Bear Brewing Co. has won numerous national and international awards for its world-class beer, including Gold Medals at the prestigious Great American Beer Festival and World Beer Cup. To keep up with the increasing demand for its beers, Diamond Bear recently finished an expansion project and moved to a larger facility in downtown North Little Rock. The new location includes a production space, tap room, and a restaurant named Arkansas Alehouse.