Our Story

a couple sitting on a lifeguard stand on wrightsville beach
The Overview 

Wrightsville Beach Brewery is committed to being a different kind of brewery, both in the beers we make and the impact we have in our community.   Our mission is to educate our customers about good environmental stewardship and contribute to the sustainability of local charities while also making tremendous beers.  Making beer and giving back to the community have equal standing with us.  One does not trump the other.  This is why we have partnered with 11 local non-profits to donate proceeds from our rotating “Beer of the Month”.  For each month of an 11 month cycle, a different nonprofit will receive proceeds from our featured beer.  Then in December (the season of giving), we will give 11% of all beer proceeds to support all 11 of our partners.  To find out more about the non-profits we partner with, check out our BEERS page.  Why 11%?  It’s widely accepted in a variety of faith groups that people should give away 10% of their income, right? So why not do ‘em one better, and give a little extra?!    

The History  

A long, long time ago in an estuary not that far away, three brainless local oystermen were out at their favorite secret oystering spot, "knocking" a couple of bushels.  They got to thinking about a perplexing question that desperately needed an answer: “Why was it that Wrightsville Beach, home to some of the world’s tastiest oysters, oysters which they thought were best accompanied by beer, didn’t have a local brewery???  These three brainless oystermen came from a family that had been gathering Wrightsville Beach’s bounty for generations.  They knew beer was always consumed (in rather large quantities) at the backyard oyster roasts, shrimp-a-roos and low country boils that their family hosted for friends.  And yet, why hadn't anyone thought to make their own beer?  So two of the  oystermen, knowing far more about seafood than beer, started home brewing.  Their first batch of beer was amazing...ly flat!  Turns out yeast doesn't take heat as well as an oyster does.  The second batch wasn't much better—apparently using the same equipment for brewing beer as steaming seafood wasn’t the best idea.  After this discovery they invested in the proper equipment, never (ok... rarely) intermingling brewing beer with steaming oysters again.  As the years passed, three oystermen became two, and then two became one. Despite these losses, many solid friends stepped up to support the last oysterman in making his family’s dream a reality.  Now, surrounded by friends far more competent than he, the last brainless oysterman has become a reluctant brewer (still preferring time in the marsh to time stirring wort). This oysterman, his waaaayy more intelligent wife and his group of friends / staff make for a team that guarantees your brews are tasty, your seafood is fresh and the atmosphere is always inviting—just like at a backyard oyster roasts for friends.

Our Staff

Jud Watkins
Owner, Brewer and Head Oyster Shucker

A Wilmington native, Jud grew up oystering with his father and grandfather in Wrightsville Beach and Masonboro marshes.  It was in these marshes that the trio dreamed up plans for a brewery and oyster house that would be a nod to Wilmington’s rich coastal history, educate patrons about environmental preservation and give back to the community.  Jud developed a passion for the food and beverage industry through several years spent homebrewing and working in Washington DC’s restaurant scene.   When not at the brewery, Jud is best found surf kayaking, oystering or otherwise enjoying the outdoors with his wife, Amber.

Contact Jud at info@wbbeer.com
an employee named amber

Amber Watkins
Co-Owner and Philanthropic Liaison

With a background in social work and non-profit management, Amber shares Jud’s passion for creating a small business focused on giving back to the local community.  Amber also loves nothing more than to throw a good party and has thrown her fair share through her experience working in the hospitality industry and managing non-profit fundraising events.  Playing outside is Amber’s number one hobby and she is newly obsessed with joining Jud in the marsh.  Match made in heaven?  We think so.
an employee

Keith Sincavage
General Manager 

Hailing from the "other Wilmington", Keith attended University Of Delaware, where he studied marketing & sociology. Realizing around that time his true passion was working in restaurants, he never quite made it into the corporate world. After years of managing several craft beer oriented bars and restaurants in Delaware,he migrated south in search of warmer weather and coastal living, landing in Wilmington, NC. A love of craft beer and thirst for brewery life led him to Wrightsville Beach Brewery, and the rest as they say, is history. When he's not at work, you can probably find him wandering in the woods, watching Philly sports, or fumbling around one of the local disc golf courses.

Contact Keith at gm@wbbeer.com
ane employee named brew

Katelyn Tayloe
Events Curator

A coastal Carolina native, coming from a small beach town. Wilmington always felt like home from the start. She started honing her party planning skills by organizing baby showers, bridal parties, and birthday events for her friends. With that knowledge and her years of work in the service industry, Katelyn brings assured and positive energy to your next event! In her spare time, she loves a good plant and spending time outdoors with her husband Spencer and their three pups. She can't wait to help make your party planning dreams come true!

Contact Katelyn at events@wbbeer.com to inquire about booking.
ane employee named rodney

Rodney Peterson

Born and raised in California, Rodney started his restaurant career at the age of 17. After moving East and graduating from the Culinary Institute of America at Hyde Park, he plied his trade in the kitchens of New York and northern New Jersey. The Executive Chef for many years at Amanda's, a Zagat rated fine dining restaurant in Hoboken,Rodney also oversaw the openings of their two sister restaurants. After their son graduated college, Rodney and his wife Laura headed south, ending up in Wilmington,  with the desire to start a "new chapter" in a warmer climate on the coast. When not working, Rodney enjoys refurbishing old bicycles and going to the beach.

Mike Allen
Kitchen Manager

Mike was born and raised in Richmond, VA. He attended East Carolina University where he graduated with a degree in Hospitality Management in 2010. Mike has been in the hospitality industry since his first job at 15 as a dishwasher and later took a 4 year break from restaurants to build boats. After COVID hit, he saw its impact on the restaurant industry and knew it was time to jump back in. He's worked all over NC but settled in Wilmington to be closer to family and enjoy the beach life year round. When he's not in the kitchen, you can find him on a golf course, soccer pitch, spending time with family, enjoying live music or watching Chelsea FC or the Washington Commanders attempt to win.

Mellisa Reynolds

Mellisa grew up in Murrieta, California. Upon searching for a change of scenery, she found herself leaping from one coast to another, bringing her and her fiancé here to Wilmington. Mellisa has been in the service industry since her first job at 15 as a server. She has always had a passion for working in a restaurant and building connections with people every day. Throughout her years of working at different restaurants and breweries she has gained a love for craft beer, leading her to Wrightsville Beach Brewery. Her dream is to one day open a cat café with rescued and adoptable cats. When she’s not at work you can find her anywhere there are animals. Mellisa enjoys volunteering at the local animal shelters, trips to the zoo, or enjoying the company of her dog and two cats.