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CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Four Friends Brewing, which had been up and running in Charlotte since 2010, has shut down, according to its Facebook page. The brewery was best known for its I-77 IPA, but had struggled in a marketplace that's become increasingly more crowded in Charlotte.

Four Friends incorporated in 2007 and opened in 2010. It was Charlotte's second oldest craft brewery, behind Olde Mecklenburg Brewery, which opened in 2009. While Olde Meck stuck to German-style beers, Four Friends was more experimental. Four Friends was Charlotte's first brewery that came in and did something different, says Daniel Hartis of charlottebeer.com. At first, its owners tried out British style ales but saw more of a demand for IPAs, he said.

Once NoDa Brewing and Birdsong Brewing opened in 2011, Four Friends began to fade. They weren't as present from a marketing standpoint as some of the new breweries, says Hartis. It took them longer to open up a tap room at their brewery in Steele Creek, while Olde Meck, NoDa and Birdsong had tap rooms running immediately after they opened.

Four Friends says its beer will be available at local bars and restaurants until it runs out.

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