Beer & Wine

Biscayne Bay Brewing's Taproom to Open in Early December

Unlike other craft breweries in Miami, Biscayne Bay Brewing Company does not have a taproom. And if you own a brewery, you need a taproom. Co-owner Jose Mallea says he would have included one in the original construction, but the brewery's opening would have been delayed several months. 

After more than a year of operation, Biscayne Bay Brewing is finally getting a taproom. Concrete has been laid, and Mallea hopes to open the taproom by early December. It's only two months away, and he's dealing with Miami's government. 

The biggest obstacle is inspections, he says. That should take about two to three weeks. "That's what breweries out here have to deal with," Mallea says. "Hopefully, as more breweries open here, the process should get easier." 

In addition to getting a taproom, Biscayne Bay Brewing will have a separate space for its barrel-aging program. Any professional brewer worth his suds knows that aging beer in barrels must be stored in a separate, temperature-controlled room. 

"We're having to air-condition the entire building, which is very inefficient for us," Mallea says.

The taproom itself will be "fairly large," around 3,500 square feet, according to Biscayne Bay's lead brewer, Andrew Guthrie. It'll have 24 taps, including space for guest taps from other breweries. There will also be a large window that allows visitors to watch workers do their barrel-aging thing. 

A taproom is a place fans can call home and find social engagement. In Florida, taprooms allow breweries to sell their own product at retail prices. 

Biscayne Bay Brewing is already making its mark. Mallea, along with seven other breweries from Broward, Miami-Dade, and Palm Beach, attended the Great American Beer Festival in Denver in late September for the first time. 

Guthrie is the man behind the beers and the barrel-aging program at Biscayne Bay Brewing. Previously, he brewed for Miami Brewing Company. So far, the owners are impressed with Guthrie's ability and even let him tweak the recipes of some of their flagship beers. "We've let Andrew change and adapt many of our recipes," Mallea says. "He's taken it to the next level."

Guthrie is now concentrating on getting beers ready for the taproom opening, which will be like a grand opening in many ways. He's aging an imperial stout in whiskey barrels that clocks in around 10 percent alcohol by volume. Mallea says the beer should be ready in time for the opening of the taproom. There's no official opening day yet, but New Times will keep you posted.
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David Minsky is a U.S. Navy veteran and Tulane graduate who has experience reporting on stories from California, South Florida, and the Deep South. He has also won some journalism awards. Email or tweet David with story tips and ideas.
Contact: David Minsky