As the Massachusetts beer scene continues its fast-paced growth, we’re tracking beer-related news bites right here: brewery openings and closures, links to interesting features from other publications, and more. We’re throwing in some liquor news for good measure, too. This piece is updated most Thursdays, and the most recent additions are at the top. Email firstname.lastname@example.org with any Massachusetts beer or liquor news that should be on our radar.
December 13, 2018
BOSTON — Dewey Square, near South Station, is on the hunt for its next summertime pop-up bar. The Greenway Conservancy is now accepting proposals from businesses to run the bar, which will open in May 2019. Proposals must be submitted by Wednesday, December 19.
HAMPTON, NEW HAMPSHIRE — Smuttynose Brewing Company (105 Towle Farm Rd.) was sold earlier this year, and now the brewery is poised to make further changes. While hanging onto classic beers like Finestkind IPA and Old Brown Dog brown ale, the brewery will test new styles, including a dry-hopped New England IPA, a DIPA, and monthly sours.
MARLBOROUGH — Flying Dreams Brewing, based in Worcester, will unveil its pilot brewery in Marlborough on Friday, December 14, at 277 Main St. The new location has a taproom for 100-plus people and will offer flights and full pours, and customers will be able to bring in outside food. The brewing system in Marlborough will allow for experimental brewing, and the taproom will eventually have brewery-only beers.
NEW ENGLAND (AND BEYOND) — Hundreds of breweries across the country will participate in an effort to fundraise for relief for those impacted by California’s Camp Fire. The Resilience Butte County Proud IPA, brewed in collaboration with Sierra Nevada, will be available at 67 breweries across New England, with all proceeds going toward relief efforts. A full list of participating breweries is available via Mass Brew Bros.
WEST SPRINGFIELD — Two Weeks Notice Brewing Company (110 Bosworth St.) celebrated its opening on December 1, 2018, offering can sales. The brewery is currently working on building out its taproom; in the meantime, it’s open for can sales on Saturdays.
November 29, 2018
HUDSON — Ground Effect Brewing Company (312 Main St.) is now open in Hudson, operating Thursday, Friday, and Saturday for now with expanded hours coming in the new year. Founders Marc Ferlo and Alexi Bobilia, who also run a painting company in Westborough, partnered with brewer Tim Daley for the brewery. Ground Effect seats 99 people, and the taproom will have an assortment of games. Visitors can bring food, and the founders hope to bring in food trucks on occasion as well.
MAYNARD — It’s been a long road, but Amory’s Tomb Brewing Company (76 Main St.) has finally opened its taproom and is sharing its hours of operation on its Facebook page. The brewery has several offerings on tap, including farmhouse ales, pale ales, and a New England-style IPA, and it will be offering growler fills as well, but check social media for availability.
PEABODY — Essex County Brewing Company (58 Pulaski St.) is a newly opened nanobrewery in Peabody that operates Fridays and Saturdays from 4 to 8 p.m. Its beers include a double IPA with citra, galaxy, and vic secret hops, plus a single IPA, a stout, a session IPA, and a kolsch. The brewery has a dragon with a hop tail for its logo, and the taproom can accommodate 60 people.
ROSLINDALE VILLAGE — This year, Roslindale’s Substation will play host to a pop-up from Jamaica Plain’s Turtle Swamp Brewing. The Turtle Swamp Winter Bierhalle is set to debut on November 30, extending through mid-January and operating Friday through Sunday.
WALTHAM — Mighty Squirrel Brewing Co. (411 Waverley Oaks Rd.) makes its public debut on December 7, opening at 4 p.m. in its new space in Waltham, which includes a giant taproom along with brewing and canning space.
November 15, 2018
SOUTH DEERFIELD — Berkshire Brewing Company (12 Railroad St.) has reopened its taproom, serving full pours for the first time, and it will celebrate with a grand opening on Tuesday, November 20. (Note: BBC is unable to offer retail sales out of the brewery; check the beer finder to figure out where to buy cans.) The brewery previously operated for tours and samples on Saturdays only, but it will now welcome customers from Thursday to Sunday. The grand opening celebration will raise money for the Food Bank of Western Massachusetts.
STATEWIDE — Two non-alcoholic beers will join the lineup of Night Shift Brewing’s distribution arm: Athletic Brewing from Stamford, Connecticut, has put up its Upside Dawn Golden Ale and Run Wild IPA for distribution to liquor stores and bars around Massachusetts.
November 8, 2018
BOSTON — Portland’s Allagash Brewery will spend the month popping up at Boston Public Market (100 Hanover St.). Each Saturday in November, the brewery will fill the market’s Hub space from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m., offering a selection of beers that customers can drink while browsing the market.
EVERETT — Another brewery stands poised to make its home in Everett, and it will be about a mile away from the so-called “Fermentation District,” a pocket of breweries and distilleries that includes Night Shift, Bone Up Brewing, and Short Path. BearMoose Brewing (1934 Revere Beach Pkwy.) will eventually open with a 10-barrel brewing system and a taproom for 120 people.
FRAMINGHAM — Jack’s Abby (100 Clinton St.), which expanded its operations nearly two years ago to add spinoff Springdale Barrel Room next door, is now thinking about renovating some of its existing warehouse space to create more room for offices — and perhaps a bakery. While its primary purpose would be to serve the existing beer hall, providing more room for dough-making for pizza and pretzels, it’s not out of the realm of possibility that it could be open to the public as well. In other Jack’s Abby news, the brewery is donating 15% of its house lager sales for November and December 2018 to the WhyNotDevin Foundation, supporting research into Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma, a rare and aggressive pediatric cancer.
WOBURN — Lord Hobo Brewing Company (5 Draper St.) will reopen its taproom following extensive renovations — including the addition of a kitchen — any day now, pending final inspections. There will be a few new beers on tap to celebrate the occasion, along with Lord Hobo’s well known Boom Sauce and Glorious. There will be taproom space for 150 people and 19 total beers on tap. Keep an eye on social media for an announcement of the exact opening date.
October 25, 2018
BELMONT — Belmont-based beer store chain Craft Beer Cellar has had its lawsuit against job review site Glassdoor dismissed. CBC filed the suit in March 2018, alleging that negative reviews left on Glassdoor by former franchisees violated state and federal law by revealing proprietary company and franchise information. But a judge ruled last week that Glassdoor was protected by an act that shields websites from legal action regarding content created by third parties, such as reviews.
EAST BROOKFIELD — Timberyard Brewing Company (555 E. Main St.) is now open in the Worcester-area town of East Brookfield, and it’s a family-friendly venue that will play host to live music and other events, including, perhaps, a winter farmers market, and showcase the work of local artists. It’s also family-friendly in that co-owners Matt Zarif and T.J. O’Connor, childhood friends, have various family members involved in the brewery. Zarif’s wife, Nellie, painted the building’s exterior, for example, while O’Connor’s sister, Kate Ohaneisian, is the taproom manager. And Timberyard has close ties to the surrounding community, too: Tom Sutter, co-owner of Hudson’s popular Medusa Brewing Company, is an adviser and investor.
Timberyard has a small food menu — think pretzels, pickles, and cheese plates — and opened with four beers on tap, including a stout and a New England-style IPA. Ultimately, the team hopes to brew sours, experiment with barrel-aging, and more, eventually serving around 20 beverages, including kombucha, soda, and seltzer. There could be an outdoor beer garden eventually, too.
October 18, 2018
BROOKLYN, NEW YORK — The age-old rivalry between the Boston Red Sox and the New York Yankees reared its head again this season, coming out in favor of the Red Sox. Due to that victory and a deal made between Sam Adams Brewery and Brooklyn Brewery, there will be a special beer on tap at the latter brewery in Williamsburg called “This Sox Pale Lager.” It will only be on tap through October 20.
CHELMSFORD — Developers have a mind to open a brewery in Chelmsford, at a new retail development between Routes 3 and 495. Real estate broker Joe Ready, who also owns a craft beer store nearby, has observed the growing demand for craft beer and envisions a setup like the Tap in Haverhill or Jack’s Abby in Framingham.
NANTUCKET — Craft Brew Alliance has recently purchased three breweries for a total of less than $45 million. Among its acquisitions is Nantucket’s Cisco Brewers, for which it spent $23 million, along with North Carolina’s Appalachian Mountain Brewery and Miami’s Wynwood Brewing. The purchase agreement leaves CBA in charge of the brands, beer, and wholesale business, while Cisco will develop retail through pop-ups and taprooms.
October 4, 2018
FOXBOROUGH — Battle Road Brewing has joined the mix of vendors at Patriot Place with a pop-up taproom called “Hop Up.” It is operating on Fridays, Saturdays, and on Patriots game days from October through December, serving craft beers from the brewery’s Maynard facility, plus some beer exclusively created for the pop-up. Customers will be able to bring their own food into the taproom or order takeout from other Patriot Place establishments.
NEWTON — Hopsters has already made its mark on the Boston area, expanding to the Seaport District at the beginning of 2018, and now it’s set upon furthering its reach, starting with Philadelphia. The founders are working to raise funds for the expansion to Pennsylvania in spring 2019, with an ultimate goal of operating 16 locations by 2022.
SEAPORT DISTRICT, BOSTON — Catch Cisco Brewers before its pop-up in the Seaport District (65 Northern Ave., Boston) ends after this weekend. The Nantucket brewery will be open this Thursday and Friday, October 4 and 5, from 4 to 11 p.m., as well as Saturday and Sunday, October 6 and 7, from 12 to 11 p.m. There are several Cisco beers on tap, Loco Taqueria is serving up a raw bar and tacos onsite, and the outdoor space is both kid- and dog-friendly. Sunday will be the final day.
WALTHAM — In a world with ax-throwing bars, no pairings of booze and athletic activities are too surprising anymore, but here’s something fun: Rock climbing and beer are about to merge in Waltham. Mighty Squirrel Brewing Company will partner with Central Rock Climbing Gym at Mighty Squirrel’s forthcoming 20,000-plus-square-foot taproom. There will be a 5,000-square-foot climbing wall separated from the taproom by only a glass partition, so visitors can watch folks climb — or partake themselves. The brewery is on track to open this fall.
September 27, 2018
EVERETT — Night Shift Brewing (87 Santilli Hwy., Everett) got approved to add live music to its arsenal (only inside the space, not on the patio). While the brewery mainly wanted the ability to have live music onsite since it occasionally plays host to wedding receptions, the team may also consider booking small bands for the taproom on weekends.
EVERYWHERE — Five Massachusetts breweries came home from the Great American Beer Festival in Denver with medals: Cambridge Brewing Company (Cambridge), Wormtown Brewery (Worcester), Castle Island (Norwood), Brewery Silvaticus (Amesbury), and Jack’s Abby (Framingham).
FALL RIVER — Canned Heat Craft Beer Company (52 Ferry St.) — Fall River’s first brewery to operate since Enterprise Brewery Co. shut down in 1963 — opens to the public on October 5, offering a rotating selection of four or five beers, plus some standard options. The brewery has previewed a few potential beers on social media, including a Portuguese-inspired pilsner, an English-style brown aged on toasted coconut, and a lime-and-vanilla milkshake IPA. Canned Heat will indeed can its beers for distribution.
NORTHFIELD — WBUR dives deep into local hops production at Four Star Farms, which sells locally grown hops to more than 50 customers around New England, including Wormtown Brewery in Worcester and Lamplighter Brewing Company in Cambridge.
QUINCY — One of the first vegan beer halls in the country is days away from opening — but it won’t really be in its full planned form just yet. Rewild (1546 Hancock St.) opens October 6, but the location is temporary and only allows for beer and wine on Saturdays and Sundays. (The team expects to move to a permanent space — with full beer and wine service — within a few years.) During the week, Rewild will be a booze-free restaurant and cafe with a fully vegan menu, featuring the Impossible burger, tacos, pizzas, and more. When the weekend arrives, expect a 24-beer draft list with plenty of local favorites showcased.
WORCESTER — Here’s a sneak peek inside Redemption Rock Brewing Company (333 Shrewsbury St.), set to open by December 2018, featuring 12 beers on draft, including year-round core brews like a dry Irish stout and a kölsch as well as other rotating selections.
In other Worcester news, tickets are now on sale for the Mass Brewers Guild’s Mass Fermentational, taking place on Worcester Common on October 6 and featuring tons of breweries (mostly local) and food trucks. Tickets are $45 and include unlimited beer samples; purchase food separately onsite. Designated drivers can get in for $10.
September 13, 2018
NORTH STONINGTON, CONNECTICUT — Trillium Brewing Company — which has locations in Boston’s Fort Point (soon to be replaced by a bigger and better Fort Point space) and Canton, as well as seasonal beer gardens popping up on Boston’s Greenway and beyond — is expanding even more. The company officially announced its long-in-the-works forthcoming Connecticut location this week. Trillium Farm & Brewery, as it will be called, will be a place to brew estate-grown beers as well as grow crops to be used at Trillium’s forthcoming restaurant (part of the new Fort Point location) and breweries. “Think fresh produce from the farm for dinner on the roof deck in Fort Point while drinking Congress Street IPA packaged that morning in Canton,” owners JC and Esther Tetreault wrote in their announcement.
NORWOOD, MASSACHUSETTS — Norwood-based brewery Castle Island is throwing a barrel-aged beer festival November 3, aptly named More Wood in Norwood, that will feature over 20 breweries from across the country, as well as food vendors, including Speakeasy Donuts. Since barrel-aging is the theme, expect to see everything from saisons to barleywines. Tickets are $60 ($25 for designated drivers), and the event takes place at the Norwood Space Center (83 Morse St.), with sessions at 1 p.m. and 6 p.m.
September 6, 2018
NEW ENGLAND — Beer volume update: New England is now home to more than 500 craft breweries, which is about 12 percent of all the craft breweries in the country. Another 75 are on the way, too. Plus, Vermont, Maine, and New Hampshire are among the 10 top states in terms of both the number of breweries per capita and beer consumption per capita.
SEAPORT DISTRICT, BOSTON — Harpoon hosts an arrival party of sorts for Loma Brewing Company, a Los Gatos, California, brewery founded in 2016 by former Red Sox player (and two-time World Series champ) Kevin Youkilis and his brother, Scott. Harpoon will contract brew two Loma beers, both IPAs: Greek God of Hops and Appeasement. (The former is a play on a nickname bestowed upon Youkilis when he was still in the minor league — “Euclis: the Greek God of Walks.”) The beers will be distributed through Eastern Massachusetts and Rhode Island.
WORCESTER — Redemption Rock Brewing Company (333 Shrewsbury St.) stands poised to become Worcester’s fifth brewery by the end of the year. The brewery is the work of Dani Babineau and twins Greg and Dan Carlson. They plan to serve both beer and coffee (a trend among breweries), with about four to six beers to start, including a kolsch, an American IPA, and a stout. Eventually, they could work up to 12 beers on tap, with rotating and seasonal options.
August 30, 2018
CHICOPEE — Leadfoot Brewing is heading toward a fall opening at 95 N. Chicopee St., where it will have a 30-barrel brewing system and a focus on lagers, especially pilsners. The space will feature a taproom — and eventually live music and food trucks, ideally. Don’t expect cans and bottles right away; first, Leadfoot will focus on distributing kegs to local restaurants and bars.
DOWNTOWN BOSTON — Somerville’s Remnant Brewing (2 Bow Market Way), which is located at Bow Market in Union Square, is popping up across the river, operating a beer garden on weekends throughout September on the Atlantic Avenue side of Boston Public Market (100 Hanover St.). There are two beers on tap and limited crowlers for sale, and there are food trucks onsite as well. Catch Remnant outside of BPM through September 30 (5 to 8 p.m. on Fridays, 12 to 8 p.m. on Saturdays, and 12 to 6 p.m. on Sundays).
HOLYOKE — A nano-brewery with just a single-barrel brewing system and six fermenters is in the works: Holyoke Craft Beer is slated to open in the STEAM building at 208 Race St. The small space will just be open to the public a few times a month for sampling beers and purchasing growlers and cans. The opening line-up will likely include a Belgian white ale, a black IPA, a New England IPA, and a pale ale. Keep an eye out for a debut within the next several months.
MASHPEE — Naukabout Brewery & Taproom (13 Lake Ave.) has only been open since March 2018 and it’s already growing, adding more than 4,000 square feet to its patio space outside, featuring views of Lake Mashpee and the Mashpee River. The brewery is celebrating the opening of its improved outdoor space with “NauktoberFest” on September 1 and 2, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., with activities such as stein-hoisting and sausage-tossing.
SEAPORT DISTRICT, BOSTON — Remnant isn’t the only new pop-up seasonal beer garden in town. Nantucket’s Cisco Brewers is also joining the mix at Seaport Boulevard, west of District Hall, in a collaboration with Loco Taqueria & Oyster Bar. (Look for it near the Courthouse T station.) The beer (and taco and oyster) garden is open from 4 p.m. to 11 p.m. Wednesday through Friday and noon to 11 p.m. Saturday, lasting through the fall, with numerous Cisco beers on tap, and it’s dog-friendly and kid-friendly. A portion of the proceeds are going toward the Massachusetts Fallen Heroes Memorial Fund.
August 23, 2018
BRAINTREE — In a collaboration with the Braintree location of Craft Beer Cellar, Chubby Chickpea’s Avi Shemtov is bringing his beer truck, Tapped, to the Braintree Town Hall Mall on Saturdays in September and October for some outdoor beer-drinking. Starting on September 8, the beer garden will operate from noon to 5 p.m. when weather permits, and there will be a food truck onsite as well. (Plus, an adjacent farmers market operates until 1 p.m.)
BRIGHTON, BOSTON — Night Shift now has two “Owl’s Nests.” Earlier in the summer, the Everett-based brewery (which also has a Boston proper facility in the works) opened a seasonal beer garden by the Esplanade. Now its second planned beer garden is open as well, this one in Herter Park, Brighton, near Harvard Stadium, and it’s dog-friendly and family-friendly. It’s currently operating on Saturdays from noon to 10 p.m. and Sundays from noon to 8 p.m., through October, and its schedule might expand before the season ends. Keep an eye on Instagram for updates on both locations (the Esplanade location has different hours), and check out the Brighton menu here and the Esplanade menu here.
MARLBOROUGH — With the Walden Woods brewery not opening at 277 Main St. as planned (see June 21 update below), Worcester’s Flying Dreams Brewing Co. will open in the 3,000-square-foot space instead, using it as a taproom and a pilot brewing space. The company currently brews in the old Wormtown Brewery space in Worcester, where it has a tasting room for samples and growler fills. That will continue to be the main production space, with the new facility used for small-batch experimentation. The Marlborough taproom will also have a bring-your-own-food policy and room for live music (small jazz and acoustic groups). It could open around November, pending the permitting process.
WAREHAM — Stone Path Malt, a four-year-old company that supplies imported German malt and locally made custom malt to craft breweries and home brewers around Massachusetts, will open a 30,000-square-foot maltery and taproom in Wareham this summer. The space will allow visitors to tour the facility and to drink beers from Stone Path partners, including Jack’s Abby, Down the Road Beer Co., and more. Plus, breweries will be able to contract with Stone Path to collaborate on custom malt production. While the taproom is expected to open this summer, the facility will be ready for tours and collaborations in the early fall.
August 16, 2018
BEVERLY — Plans are progressing for Channel Marker Brewing, which is set to open in the artsy Porter Mill building (95 Rantoul St.) in Beverly this fall — it just got its state farmer-brewery license squared away. To start, Channel Marker will work with a three-barrel brewing system, plus a one-barrel pilot system for experimentation and limited releases. There won’t be canning at the beginning, just growlers. The Channel Marker taproom will have room for nearly 50 people. Expect to see New England IPAs, sours, and more.
SPENCER — Located about 10 miles west of Worcester, Spencer is home to the only Trappist brewery in the United States, Spencer Brewery, which is at a monastery called St. Joseph’s Abbey. The brewery isn’t open to the public but hosts an annual open-house day that always draws big crowds. So big, in fact, that the brewery is now considering opening a taproom that would operate year-round as a way to keep up with its growing fanbase and ultimately sell more beer. Spencer Brewery currently produces 4,500 barrels of beer a year (and is working to slowly ramp up to 10,000) and distributes to parts of New England, Ohio, and Michigan.
But there are logistics to consider. As Father Isaac Keeley, who is the director of the brewery, told the Boston Business Journal, a recognized Trappist brewery needs to be inside a monastic enclosure, which is not the type of venue equipped to handle a continuous stream of visitors from the public, so where should the taproom be located? There’s an existing building on an edge of the property that could work — but it isn’t adjacent to the physical brewery, so that brings up questions about how the licensing works. In any case, the monks of St. Joseph’s Abbey are on board with the idea of adding a taproom, and the brewery is consulting with a law firm experienced in the craft brewing world to get through the process. Stay tuned.
SPRINGFIELD — White Lion Brewing Company, currently a contract brewer, is opening a tasting room, test kitchen, and microbrewery on Main Street in downtown Springfield in early 2019. It will be a place for the White Lion team to work on small batches of beer and experiment with barrel-aging, and in addition to beer, there will be comfort food, such as shrimp and grits, duck confit poutine, and burgers. It will also have a seasonal outdoor space.
August 9, 2018
BOSTON AND BEYOND — New York-based beer publication Hop Culture shared a round-up of what it deems to be the five best breweries in and around Boston, and it includes some heavy hitters: Trillium (which “has been at the forefront of the New England IPA movement”), Night Shift (which “has been pumping out a diverse selection of stellar beers”), and more.
CHARLESTOWN, BOSTON — The planned Castle Island Brewing beer garden at Underground at Ink Block didn’t work out (see July 12 update below), but the Norwood-based brewery found a new outdoor location in Boston for the summer: 1 Constitution Wharf in Charlestown, by the historic USS Constitution. With 20 beers on tap, games, and the potential addition of wines and food pop-ups soon, the waterfront beer garden is open from 2 to 10 p.m. Thursday through Saturday and 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday, through October (weather-permitting). Last call is 45 minutes before closing. The garden is dog-friendly.
PLYMOUTH — There’s a new brewery in town: Second Wind Brewing Company (7 Howland St.). Founders Kenny Semcken, Hans Terbush and J.R. Shepard had their own home-brewing club, falling deeper in the brewing obsession before finally opening their own place. Second Wind’s taproom and beer garden are currently open Thursday through Sunday, serving up beers like Coconut Blackout (brewed with chocolate, coconut, and vanilla) and Dad Bod (“a simple cream ale inspired by the American lager.”)
August 2, 2018
BACK BAY AND BRIGHTON, BOSTON — Night Shift secured prime territory along the Esplanade and opened the first of two planned beer gardens along the Charles River on Wednesday. The Everett-based brewery now occupies a section of Fiedler Field at the Esplanade, where visitors will find six of Night Shift’s beers, plus four beer options from out-of-town breweries, three wines, a cider, some non-alcoholic beverages, and snacks. Today, August 2, the Chubby Chickpea food truck will be on hand. The second beer garden, at Herter Park in Brighton, will come along in the next couple weeks. Both are expected to operate through October. Swing by the Esplanade location between 4 p.m. and 10 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, 12 p.m. and 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 12 p.m. and 8 p.m. Sunday.
Also in Boston, also on the Esplanade, Charles River Bistro — which is within eye- and ear-shot of the Hatch Shell performance space — now has its own fenced-in beer garden, serving beer, cider, wine, sangria, and mimosas. The garden is open on Wednesday nights during the free Boston Landmarks Orchestra performances and during jazz and soul brunches on Sundays. The Bistro itself is open daily from March to November.
HOLYOKE — Paper City Brewery has a rumored comeback attempt in the works. Even as the brewery faces possible debt, the Facebook page reactivated this week with cryptic messages that there was “something brewing” at 108 Cabot St. The brewery’s co-founder had previously shared that the brewery stopped production in 2017, but now it seems as though it’s looking for investors to start up again.
LOWER ROXBURY, BOSTON — Backlash Beer Company is tantalizingly close to opening its brewery at 152 Hampden St. in Lower Roxbury. A recent update indicates there are new beers in the works, and social media posts suggest there are just a few hurdles to clear before opening.
MASSACHUSETTS — Mass Brew Bros. rounds up a selection of breweries with optimal outdoor space, from patios and decks to beer gardens. There’s Fort Hill Brewery with its German-style beers, walled-in patio, and connection to the Norwottock Rail Trail, which gives access to other breweries in Western Mass. Westfield River Brewing in Southwick also made the list, along with Cape Ann Brewery, Naukabout in Mashpee, and Buzzard’s Bay Brewing.
RAYNHAM — Crue Brew Brewery (95 Ryan Dr., #6) is now up and running, serving amber ales, porters, stouts, IPAs and more. The brewery operates in the evenings, Thursday through Sunday.
July 12, 2018
BOSTON — As mentioned in the June 21 update below, the Department of Conservation & Recreation was recently accepting proposals for two beer gardens to appear along the Charles River — one by the Esplanade and one at Herter Park, near Harvard Stadium — through the summer and early fall, likely operating Thursday through Sunday. Good news for Night Shift fans: The popular Everett-based brewery has reportedly won the contract. This isn’t Night Shift’s only move into Boston proper; it’s also got a huge Lovejoy Wharf facility in the works.
And while this may feel like the summer of beer gardens, one project announced back in April is no longer coming to pass. Norwood-based Castle Island Brewing had been working to open a 5,000-square-foot, 400-person seasonal beer garden at Boston’s Underground at Ink Block in the South End, but it will not be opening after all, with the Castle Island team citing “circumstances beyond [its] control.” The Globe notes that city officials released a statement saying that the Boston Police Department had safety concerns regarding the consumption of alcohol at the high-traffic location. But Castle Island does hope to open a beer garden somewhere else, writing on Instagram that a backup location is already in the works; stay tuned for more developments.
ESSEX — Meanwhile on the North Shore, the former site of the Fortune Palace in Essex will be home to a new brewery and restaurant around September 2019, courtesy of Hamilton-based home-brewer John Collins and “an unnamed reputable restaurant group.” The two-story venue will have bars on two floors, a beer garden outside, and around 20 beers on tap each day. The restaurant section will be an “upscale American bistro.”
June 28, 2018
FALMOUTH — Martha’s Vineyard brewery Bad Martha is growing, making its first move off the Vineyard with a 5,400-square-foot brewery in the works on East Falmouth Highway. The brewery, which has zoning approval, will follow the same approach as the company’s existing Edgartown premises — that is, a taproom. Restaurant Oysters Too is currently located at that site, but it won’t be going anywhere — it seems the two businesses will coexist alongside each other.
NEWBURYPORT — Expansion plans are in the work for Newburyport Brewing Co., with plans that entail a major space upgrade. The brewery is plotting to move its production and taproom from the current New Pasture Road location to a former farmhouse on Parker Street, granting it a 5,000-square-foot taproom and restaurant, along with beefed up brewing capacities. At present, the space is used for offices. The brewery’s plans aren’t set in stone yet: It will need a zoning variance in order to move ahead.
NORWOOD — Castle Island Brewing Company is set to up its production, having acquired a 30-foot grain silo, as well as an automated malt handling system, to be installed at its Norwood taproom and brewery. The first grain into the silo is set to be used for Castle Island’s American Pale Ale.
June 21, 2018
BOSTON — With the Greenway full up on beer gardens, it’s now the Charles River’s turn: two seasonal beer gardens are in the works, one at Storrow Memorial Embankment Park (near Fairfield and Dartmouth Streets in Back Bay) and the other at Christian A. Herter Park, off Soldiers Field Road near Harvard Stadium. The Department of Conservation & Recreation is currently accepting proposals, with the operators expected to coordinate food and permitting for pouring beers four days a week from late June to October. The beer gardens are could operate Thursday and Friday from 4 to 9 p.m. and weekends from 12 to 8 p.m.
CAMBRIDGE — Cambridge Brewing Company (1 Kendall Sq.) partnered with Eataly and the Lovin’ Spoonfuls food rescue for the release of a new beer called the Grateful Bread, as part of an effort to spread awareness about food waste. The beer itself was made with leftover bread donated from Eataly, and proceeds from its sales will go towards Lovin’ Spoonfuls.
MARLBOROUGH — Walden Woods Brewing (277 Main St.) fell into difficulty and will not open as planned. “We would like the entire community to know how hard we fought to save our vision - this little brewery - but in the end, the battle was lost,” the owners wrote in a post on Facebook. According to Mass Brew Bros., unforeseen circumstances created financial challenges the brewery was unable to overcome. The city will reportedly keep the space available for lease to a new brewing operation.
WEYMOUTH — Vitamin Sea Brewing (30 Moore Rd.) will open in Weymouth as early as September, with a taproom and brewing space. It will be close by to another brewery, Barrel House Z. Founder Dino Funari secured the necessary brewing permitting, and will soon get a building permit to start construction.
May 24, 2018
BOSTON — Just in time for a couple of hot days, two seasonal outdoor drinking spots opened up this week: Trillium Garden on the Greenway (at High Street on the Greenway, across from Rowes Wharf) and the Downeast Back Porch (also on the Greenway, in Dewey Square by South Station).
When weather permits, Trillium is open five days a week through the end of October, serving Trillium beers on draft, along with wines from Westport Rivers Vineyards. Keep an eye on Trillium Garden’s Twitter account for announcements about tap takeovers, food trucks, and weather closures, and view the current draft list here. The Garden is open from 2 p.m. to 10 p.m. Wednesday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday, and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, with last call a half hour before closing.
At the Downeast Back Porch, Downeast Cider — with the help of the Tapped beer truck — is serving five ciders on draft, a rotating local beer, and wines from Half Bottle Cans, now through October. It’s open every day except for Tuesday and Thursday, featuring lawn games, music, and other entertainment, and there are usually plenty of food trucks in the area as well. View the tap list and events calendar here.
SOMERVILLE — Somerville-based contract brewer Small Change Brewing — which is brewing out of Great North Aleworks in New Hampshire — releases its first beer this week, a dry hopped pale ale. Small Change focuses on beers that are “usually low in alcohol and always high in flavor,” per its website. Follow along on Instagram for updates on where to find the beer, such as at Craft Beer Cellar in Belmont and Westford, as well as at Atlas Liquors in Medford. Coming up next? An English-style dark mild coming in at just 3.1%.
May 10, 2018
BOSTON — The rumors are true: Last year’s popular Trillium Garden on the Greenway is indeed coming back this year. Per an announcement from Trillium and the Greenway Conservancy, the beer garden will open later this month at High Street across from Rowes Wharf and remain open through the end of October, weather permitting, operating Wednesday through Sunday with draft beer from Trillium and wine from Westport Rivers Vineyards. Keep an eye on Twitter for updates and an official opening date.
CAMBRIDGE — Tickets are now on sale for the seventh annual Hyper-Local Craft Brewfest by the Sustainable Business Network of Massachusetts, an event jam-packed with beverage tastings, homebrewing demos and lectures, entertainment, and food. This year, it’s on Saturday, June 16, at University Park, with an afternoon session and an evening session. Tickets start at $40 and are available online, and admission includes unlimited tastings of local beers, ciders, meads, and other beverages, as well as some local food samples. (There will also be larger servings of food available for purchase.)
SOMERVILLE — Somerville’s annual decentralized outdoor music festival, Porchfest, returns this Sunday, May 13 (not Saturday — it’s officially been moved to the rain date), bringing music to a porch near you (or, more likely, many porches near you). Two Somerville breweries, Aeronaut (14 Tyler St.) and Winter Hill (328 Broadway), have collaborated on Porchbeer 2018, aimed at supporting music education by donating 100% of profits to School of Honk. According to a statement from Winter Hill Brewing, it’s a “true Somerville session” that is “both a collaboration and a hybrid beer — using two different ale yeasts...and two Southern Hemisphere hops.” Expect a flavor of “light stone fruits, pineapple, citrus, and herbal notes” with low bitterness and a 5.2% ABV, “nearly perfect for tossing back a few on the porch while the band plays on!” (The breweries would like to remind you to drink responsibly and obey open container laws.) Here’s the info on how to pre-reserve a four-pack or a case, and on Porchfest day, the cans will be available at both taprooms (and on draft, in limited amounts) — and there’ll also be cans on select porches.
May 3, 2018
BOSTON — Have you heard about Night Shift Brewing’s forthcoming expansion to Boston proper? In case you missed it, here are some pertinent details. Long story short, it’s going to be awesome. And there’ll be food and coffee, along with beers exclusive to that location.
FRAMINGHAM — The seemingly ever-growing Jack’s Abby is getting an award for, well, growing. The U.S. Small Business Association has named the brewery the Massachusetts Manufacturer of the Year, citing its production growth from 18,000 to 43,000 barrels from 2015 to 2017, as well as the addition of over 100 local employees during that time period. Jack’s Abby also added a second brand, Springdale Beer, last year, with a taproom next door, and Springdale began distribution this year. The SBA will give co-owners and brothers Jack, Eric, and Sam Hendler their award at a ceremony in Needham tomorrow.
PEABODY — The North Shore beer scene continues to grow. With Granite Coast Brewing Co. on deck for a late August opening in Peabody, another three breweries are also potentially in the works there — Essex County Brewery and two others that have not yet been formally announced.
SOMERVILLE — As of yesterday, Somerville Brewing Company, aka Slumbrew, has temporarily revived its Assembly Row beer garden that closed in fall 2017 (301 Canal St.). As noted below, it got a reprieve for another summer because the construction set to overtake its site has been delayed. The brewery also has an indoor facility at Assembly Row, American Fresh Brewhouse at 490 Foley St., not to mention its original brewery and taproom at 15 Ward St. outside of Somerville’s Union Square. The newly reopened Assembly beer garden is dog-friendly, up to three or sometimes five dogs at a time, depending on chillness.
April 26, 2018
ALLSTON, BOSTON — Aeronaut will once again host a pop-up beer garden in Allston this summer at Zone 3 on Western Avenue. Expect live music, plenty of beer, and a family-friendly, dog-friendly vibe every Wednesday and Friday evening from June through September. (The Somerville brewery is also reportedly considering a bike-friendly summer pop-up elsewhere in the Boston area this summer; stay tuned.)
BEER STORES EVERYWHERE — For the Boston Globe Magazine, Devra First writes “an open letter to men who sell beer, from a woman who drinks it,” asking those who sell beer to realize that a customer’s gender doesn’t indicate anything definitive about that customer’s beer knowledge, likes, or dislikes. In other words, don’t assume that women shopping for beer only want fruit beer or cider recommendations.
CAMBRIDGEPORT, CAMBRIDGE — Starting May 6, the Central Flea market will be back up and running on Sundays, this time at University Park near Massachusetts Avenue. Cambridge’s Lamplighter Brewing Co. will run an eight-tap beer garden there (and there will also be food trucks around) from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. each week, weather permitting. Aside from a variety of Lamplighter styles, the brewery also wants to serve a local cider. The space will fit about 100 people, and there will be some long tables and benches, standing tables, and plenty of open grassy space.
DOWNTOWN BOSTON — More outdoor drinking? More outdoor drinking. The next installment of seasonal outdoor extravaganza Boston Seasons, this one dubbed the Patios and running through spring and summer, will debut at City Hall Plaza on May 4, featuring a Wachusett Brewing Company beer garden (as well as Cambridge’s Honeycomb Creamery, serving ice cream). The beer garden will be pouring pints (of Wachusett as well as some guest brewers) starting at 4 p.m. on weekdays and 11 a.m. on weekends. Keep an eye out for pop-ups and activities throughout the season, including puppy visits, Boston Public Market picnic events, mini golf, and more.
Also downtown, the aforementioned planned “Dewey Square Drinkery” pop-up bar proposed by the Greenway Conservancy now has a vendor attached: Downeast Cider, as Boston Magazine reports. Pending permitting, the Downeast Back Porch on the Greenway, as it’ll be called, will be steps from South Station, serving five ciders on draft, including a new mint lemonade flavor that’ll be exclusive to this pop-up. Also on the menu: wines from Half Bottle Cans and a rotating local beer. The Back Porch will be open from late May through October on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday evenings, as well as on the weekends. As usual, there will be food trucks in the area. Expect lawn games, live music, and other attractions.
Also also downtown, and also by the Greenway Conservancy, the seasonal beer garden near Rowes Wharf will probably come back again this summer — stay tuned for an announcement soon — and signs point to Trillium reprising its role there.
ROXBURY — The opening of the Backlash Beer brewery and taproom in Roxbury is so close; it could debut in mid-May. The brewery will go into its final inspections in the coming weeks.
April 19, 2018
ALLSTON, BOSTON AND BEVERLY — Heading to a Boston Cannons lacrosse game at Harvard Stadium or Endicott College this season? The team will be running a craft beer garden for the home games at both stadiums this year, featuring Bent Water Brewing Company, True North Ales, Jack’s Abby, and Castle Island Brewing Company, with Bent Water and Castle Island also brewing exclusive Cannons-themed beers for the occasion.
CINCINNATI — With Boston Beer Company busy breaking in its relatively new taproom at its Jamaica Plain facility and planning to expand to Downtown Boston, it’s also busy out of state: It’ll open a 9,000-square-foot taproom across the street from its existing Cincinnati, Ohio brewing space, which it has owned since 1997.
EVERYWHERE — Salem’s Notch Brewing has teamed up with the Trustees, the non-profit conservation group that oversees more than 46,000 acres of Massachusetts land (over 25,000 of those acres are publicly accessible) — from parks and gardens to hiking trails and lighthouses. This partnership will allow Notch to pop up at a variety of Trustees sites with a mobile beer garden. Most events will be free, and many will include live music and other family-friendly activities to be enjoyed while the adults drink Notch’s low-ABV ales and lagers. Keep an eye on the event calendar here.
IPSWICH — Haven’t yet made it to the new tasting room at Privateer Rum (11 Brady Dr.)? Northshore Magazine features a nice peek inside the attractive space; take a look, and then go taste rum at the boat-shaped bar.
SOUTH END, BOSTON — Castle Island Brewing, which has a taproom in Norwood, plans to open a seasonal beer garden in Boston’s South End at Underground at Ink Block (90 Traveler St.), pending city approval. The art-covered park debuted last year under I-93, and Castle Island Brewing’s 5,000-square-foot beer garden (“Castle Island at Underground”), if approved, will open there on May 11 and last through mid-October, operating from 3 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Thursdays and Fridays and 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays. There will be about eight different beer styles available each day, as well as a couple wines. Thanks to some new equipment in Norwood, Castle Island has been able to increase production and play around with some new small-batch experiments, which will make appearances Underground. The spacious beer garden will fit around 400 people, and there will be lawn games and probably food trucks and other vendors onsite. The beer garden is slated to appear seasonally for at least five years.
March 29, 2018
ASHLAND — Medfield-based, athlete-founded Zelus Beer Company — which produces “hydration-friendly” beers that are “crafted for your active lifestyle,” with low alcohol content — will open a pop-up taproom and beer garden at the Corner Spot in Ashland (6 Cherry St.) from April 13 to April 26, offering tasters, pints, and merch. There will also be a food truck onsite, as well as music and other events. Keep an eye on the Zelus website for scheduling information and updates.
EVERETT — With retail cannabis sales set to begin on July 1, one local brewery was hoping to be the first in the state to infuse beer with CBD, an active compound in cannabis that is thought to have some potential medical benefits without the psychoactive effects caused by another well-known cannabis compound, THC. Down the Road Beer Co. (199 Ashland St.) hoped to add CBD to its newly released Goopmassta Session IPA, but the state’s Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission said no: “Infusing or otherwise adding cannabinoid extract in alcoholic beverages is considered adulteration of alcohol,” which is a no-no. (Industrial hemp, however, is allowed in the manufacture of alcohol in Massachusetts under certain conditions.) Want to try CBD-infused beer? Head to Vermont and seek out Long Trail Brewing’s Medicator. In Oregon, Coalition Brewing is also making a CBD-infused beer, Two Flowers IPA.
HARVARD — Carlson Orchards (115 Oak Hill Rd.), which has been producing non-alcoholic apple cider for decades, is getting into the hard cider game, the company announced this week, thanks in part to some consultation with the Stormalong Cider team — neighbors at New England Apple Products in Leominster, where Carlson Orchards’ non-alcoholic cider is produced. “We wanted to produce a hard cider that was similar to our premium farmstand cider and ultimately decided to make an ‘unfiltered’ hard cider for increased apple taste and character,” said Carlson Orchards president Frank Carlson, via press release. The first off-site release will be 16-ounce cans of Oak Hill Blend, distributed around the state via the Massachusetts Beverage Alliance, available starting April 1. Stay tuned for a potential fall 2018 opening of a tasting room onsite at Carlson Orchards.
MASHPEE — Today, March 29, is opening day for Cape Cod’s Naukabout Brewery & Taproom (13 Lake Ave.), a seven-barrel brewhouse with lake and river views. It’s open from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m. today and 2 p.m. to 9 p.m. this Friday and Saturday (closed on Sunday). The opening lineup of beers includes Quittin’ Time, a “juicy” and “tropical” New England IPA; the triple dry-hopped Tides double IPA; a 3.5%-er, Stormborn Stout; and more.
SOUTH DEERFIELD — Berkshire Brewing Company (12 Railroad St.), which has been around since 1994, could soon open an 850-square-foot taproom that’ll operate a few days a week, with 20 taps, pretzels from Baked in Shelburne Falls, and food trucks outside on summer weekends. (Customers will also be able to bring in their own food.) There will be room for about 55 people inside. Why now? A recent amendment to a state law is now making it possible for the brewery — which has a pub-brewer wholesale license — to move from only offering free samples during tours to actually selling poured beer (but not packaged beer) onsite.
SOUTH END, BOSTON — Heading to the SoWa Open Market to shop and eat? It takes place on Sundays from May 6 to October 28, from 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., and starting at 11 a.m. each week, you can drink some beer, too. The Power Station (540 Harrison Ave.) will become the Beer Barn, courtesy of Craft Collective, serving up a rotating selection of beers and ciders. There’ll also be lawn games, live music, and more.
March 22, 2018
FALL RIVER — Canned Heat Craft Beer Company (52 Ferry St.) could open as soon as early May; the team plans to can (of course) and distribute the beer, and there will also be tasting hours at the space, which will include cold food and a patio. Canned Heat has been previewing some potential beers on Facebook, including Limesicle, a milkshake IPA made with lime peel and vanilla bean; Aloha Brown, an English-style brown that will be aged on toasted coconut; and a Portuguese-inspired pilsner.
HAMPTON, NEW HAMPSHIRE — Smuttynose Brewing Company (105 Towle Farm Rd.) has been sold for an undisclosed amount to Runnymede Investments, a venture capital and investment firm based in North Hampton, New Hampshire, that intends to help the brand “not only survive, but...thrive.” Former Boston Beer Company executive Rich Lindsay, who was briefly CFO for Night Shift Brewing, will be CEO.
ROSLINDALE — Alas, the season is about to end for Trillium’s temporary beer hall at the Roslindale Substation (4228 Washington St.). This Sunday will be the final day; check out some details for the last few events here.
SPRINGFIELD — In a Mass. Brew Bros. blind, bracket-style tasting of 20 Massachusetts New England IPAs, the victor was a nanobrewery in planning, Rustic Brewing Company, with a brew called Hop Blind. Lots of more established breweries were included, such as Trillium, Idle Hands, Tree House, and Lord Hobo. Western Mass. apparently has a lot to look forward to when Rustic opens, focusing on New England IPAs and milkshake IPAs.
WALTHAM — Contract brand Mighty Squirrel Brewing Co. will get its own permanent home later this year, likely around fall — a 23,000-square-foot brewery and taproom right by Beaver Brook Reservation (411 Waverley Oaks Rd.). The large space will include a second taproom for overflow and private events, two patios, and a 30-barrel system, as well as an additional five-barrel pilot system for experimentation. The brand launched a few years back with the aim of producing protein-packed post-workout beers, but these days, Mighty Squirrel has moved away from those recipes, instead producing beers such as the hazy Cloud Candy IPA, Mocha Stout milk stout, and Kiwi White Belgian white ale.
WORCESTER — Greater Good Imperial Brewing Company (55 Millbrook St.), which focuses on imperial ales and lagers between 8% and 14% ABV (hence the name), has debuted its 100-person taproom; here’s the schedule for the first couple of weeks. Greater Good’s kitchen, dubbed Toast (stylized “TOAST.”), is serving up five types of grilled cheese, plus soft pretzels, hot dogs, and other snacks.
March 15, 2018
DOWNTOWN BOSTON — At the Royale over the weekend, a number of local bartenders took part in the annual Speed Rack competition, a speed bartending competition by and for women that raises money for breast cancer charities (and visibility for women in the bartending industry). This year, Tainah Soares (of A4cade in Cambridge) was crowned Miss Speed Rack New England, and she’ll go on to compete at the national finals in May, taking place in Chicago.
DOWNTOWN CROSSING, BOSTON — Democracy Brewing (35 Temple St.) — one of several exciting Boston-area brewery openings potentially slated for spring 2018 — is three months into construction and shared some renderings of what it’ll look like when it’s complete. Democracy Brewing is located in the longtime Windsor Button space.
FORT POINT, BOSTON — Trillium Brewing Company’s forthcoming Fort Point location at 47 Farnsworth St. — a move from its original spot in the neighborhood (369 Congress St.) that will result in a much larger and more awesome space — is moving along. BLDUP has a March construction update on the 16,000-square-foot project, noting that a permit has been submitted for restaurant occupancy. The two-story space, which could open by the end of the year, will include a brewpub with a full kitchen and microbrewery, bar on each floor, a room for private events, a retail shop, and two outdoor patios — one of which will be on the roof.
ROSLINDALE, BOSTON — Distraction Brewing Company (2 Belgrade Ave.) has now secured its Massachusetts farmer-brewery license, which lets it produce beer. Still in the works: a pouring license, zoning, and building the taproom.
WEYMOUTH — In addition to Barrel House Z (95 Woodrock Rd.), which opened a year and a half ago, and the forthcoming Article Fifteen (835 Washington St.) (see February 8 update below), Weymouth has even more beer on the way. Vitamin Sea Brewing has signed a lease near Barrel House Z and could open a 10-barrel brewery and taproom by the end of 2018, featuring a patio and rotating food trucks.
March 1, 2018
BOSTON — Prepare for beer gardens. Once the season arrives, Trillium’s popular Greenway garden will likely make a comeback this year, as the Herald reports, and that’s not all: The Greenway Conservancy is trying to find a brewery for “Dewey Square Drinkery,” a pop-up bar that would be open at least a couple days a week in Dewey Square. Stay tuned, and in the meantime, catch Trillium’s other seasonal beer garden — an indoor one — at the Roslindale Substation (4228 Washington St.)
CAMBRIDGE TO MEXICO CITY — Moe Isaza, bar manager at Pammy’s (928 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge), is currently competing for his third time in the annual Bacardi Legacy Cocktail Competition, and he’s already made it quite far — he’ll be one of just two United States finalists competing globally in Mexico City against about 30 international bartenders on April 25. The US finalists were pulled from a field of 720 recipes submissions, narrowed down through several stages of judging and competition. Isaza’s drink is called the Poderoso and includes Bacardi Ocho, coffee liqueur (paying homage to Colombia, where Isaza was born before coming to East Boston as a four-year-old), pineapple juice, amaro, and a muddled lemon wedge.
EVERETT TO PAWTUCKET AND BEYOND — Night Shift Brewing (87 Santilli Hwy., Everett) is outgrowing its home and is now doing some contract brewing out of the Isle Brewers Guild cooperative in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, adding about 10,000 barrels a year to Night Shift’s output. And it’s the Everett brewery’s first foray into Rhode Island; it doesn’t yet distribute there, but its beers made at Isle Brewers Guild will be on tap and in cans at the Guild taproom.
In other Night Shift news, Braintree’s Widowmaker Brewing (220 Wood Rd.) has signed on with Night Shift Distributing (Night Shift Brewing’s sibling distribution arm) to take things to the next level (previously self-distributing to around 30 nearby accounts), hoping to spread around the whole Greater Boston area, not just the South Shore. Keep an eye out for Widowmaker’s Ecstasy of Gold American IPA and 50 Year Storm Double IPA around town, likely followed soon by the Donut Shop Stout.
And in other Night Shift news, Night Shift Distributing recently brought its first gluten-free brewery into its portfolio, Ghostfish Brewing out of Seattle. Four-packs began to hit Massachusetts shelves a couple weeks ago; look for Ghostfish’s Grapefruit IPA, Meteor Shower Blonde Ale, and Shrouded Summit Belgian White Ale.
IPSWICH — Privateer Rum (11 Brady Dr.) announced today that Maggie Campbell — head distiller since 2012, vice president since 2015 — has risen through the ranks again. She’s now president of the company, working alongside founder and CEO Andrew Cabot to further grow the seven-year-old brand, including doubling Privateer’s production capacity this year. (Privateer also recently debuted a new tasting room at the distillery.) Campbell is a familiar and distinguished face in the distilling world (and wine world, too), appearing on a number of boards and committees, as well as winning plenty of awards and recognition for her work at Privateer.
MALDEN — In case you missed yesterday’s news, Malden is getting lots more beer.
WORCESTER — Here’s a sneak peek inside Greater Good Imperial Brewing Company (55 Millbrook St.), set to open later this month with a focus on hefty imperial brews. The 100-person taproom will also have live music, games, and some food, such as panini and pretzels.
February 23, 2018
SOMERVILLE — Somerville Brewing Company, aka Slumbrew, will be temporarily bringing back its outdoor beer garden at Assembly Row. “We’ll be back this summer with outdoor drinking and dining right at Assembly Row,” said cofounder Caitlin Jewell in a Facebook live video today. “We have bands and bocce and fun.” The beer garden, which was open in warmer seasons and covered up by a tent in colder seasons, was around for nearly three years before shutting down in fall 2017. A couple months later, Somerville Brewing Company opened up a full-service restaurant and bar, American Fresh Brewhouse, just down the block at 490 Foley St. in Assembly Row. Plus, there’s also the original Somerville Brewing location, a brewery and taproom in Somerville’s Boynton Yards neighborhood, right by Union Square (15 Ward St.)
In a Facebook thread, Jewell mentioned that this time around the beer garden will have “no tent, just fresh air.” She also noted that the “current plan” is that it’s just coming back for this upcoming warm season; the land is still slated to be built upon — part of Assembly Row’s seemingly never-ending development — but plans got delayed by a year.
Another beer update elsewhere in Somerville: On March 3, Winter Hill Brewing Co. (328 Broadway, Winter Hill, Somerville) will introduce its new milk stout, Large Iced Regular. The name — and the winter release date — is an homage to New Englanders’ year-round iced coffee obsession, and the stout is infused with Counter Culture Hologram coffee. In honor of the release, the brewery will be serving a special Union Square Donuts doughnut on March 3, while supplies last; the doughnut glaze is made using the beer.
February 16, 2018
BOSTON — Boston Beer Co., which is behind Samuel Adams beer as well as Angry Orchard hard cider, Twisted Tea, and other alcoholic beverages, has a new president: Dave Burwick, who will leave his position of CEO of Peet’s Coffee for the job. He’s also been a member of Boston Beer Co.’s board of directors for over a decade. Burwick succeeds longtime president and CEO Martin Roper. Meanwhile, Boston Beer Co. founder and chairman Jim Koch will continue to hold those positions.
EVERYWHERE — In honor of International Women’s Day on March 8, female brewers nationwide — including plenty in Massachusetts — will be brewing beers made with a special Pink Boots blend of hops, named for the Pink Boots organization, which supports women in beer-related careers. (Sales of the hops go to the organization.) Keep an eye out for all the Pink Boots beers appearing at breweries around town later this year.
THE UK — At last, the news that Pretty Things’ rabid Boston fanbase has been waiting for! Well, not exactly. Pretty Things founders Dann and Martha Holley-Paquette have a new brewery project in the works, but it’s all the way overseas in Sheffield, England. The popular Somerville-based Pretty Things Beer & Ale Project ended in late 2015 after a seven-year run; the website, which is still live, describes it as “now an ex-project.”
“We always intended to end it on our terms, and we are happy to have done so,” the duo wrote on their website. “That’s why it was a project!”
The new project will be a microbrewery on the site of the Old Dairy, which, as its name suggests, was once a milk and cheese processing plant. The Holley-Paquettes will reportedly “produce craft beer in bottles and kegs for sale to wholesale customers.”
February 8, 2018
BOSTON / CANTON — No, a Trillium Brewing Company (369 Congress St., Boston; 110 Shawmut Rd., Canton) truck didn’t get “Storrowed” — that was just a fun bit of Photoshop in order to promote the brewery’s new release, a double IPA called Storrowed. The company describes it as having a “dank nose of sweaty pineapple, mangosteen, and stone fruit [and] intensely juicy flavors of overripe mango, pear flesh, notes of grapefruit pith, and a background hit of raw sugar.” For those who don’t understand the term “Storrowed,” just heed the road signs that prohibit trucks from driving on Storrow Drive. Don’t be that truck that gets stuck at the overpass. You will get stuck.
CAMBRIDGE — Lamplighter Brewing Company (284 Broadway) officially debuts its new back taproom today, February 9, doubling the brewery’s capacity and allowing it to host more private and public events. And it’s got a really great mural.
HAMPTON, NEW HAMPSHIRE — Smuttynose Brewing Company (105 Towle Farm Rd.), which has been a big name in New England’s craft beer world for more than two decades, is for sale. In a note shared by owners Peter Egelston and Joanne Francis on social media and the Smuttynose website, the duo writes: “At this time, in order for our company to continue on the path we embarked on back in 1994, Smuttynose needs someone who can provide financial resources that will move the company forward...We’re strongly committed to making sure this transition is as smooth as possible, and to help the company’s new owner or partner embark on a successful next chapter for Smuttynose and its wonderful staff. We want to emphasize Smuttynose Brewing company is open, brewing our fine beers daily and serving delicious food at Hayseed Restaurant. Many of you have asked how you can help...keep drinking Smuttynose brews and send your rich aunt or uncle our way!”
ROSLINDALE — Distraction Brewing Company (2 Belgrade Ave.) is a big step closer to opening; the brewery has secured its TTB license, meaning that the federal government recognizes it as a brewery. “In other words, we’re one step closer to transforming this raw, beautiful space into a place where our fellow Rozzidents can kick back and enjoy our beer,” the brewery wrote on Facebook late last month. “Still plenty of work to do. But we can’t wait to get our hands dirty.”
WEYMOUTH — There’s a Kickstarter campaign underway to help fund the building of an “epic taproom” for Article Fifteen Brewing (835 Washington St.), a “veteran-owned nano-brewery” that is currently in the buildout phase. The campaign ends in 10 days, and there’s about $4000 left to raise by then. The team has a lease, brewing equipment, and funds to help with the buildout but is seeking a little bit of help to get to the next step of the process. When Article Fifteen opens, it’ll serve beer “inspired by a love of hops and a proud tradition of military, fire, and medical service.”
WORCESTER — Founded in 2014, 3cross Brewing Company (4 Knowlton Ave.) made a change recently: It’s now 3cross Fermentation Cooperative. As the name suggests, it’s now a coop, owned by workers and customers (the first community-owned brewery in the state), and it’s expanding its focus beyond beer to other fermented products.