Do three breweries make a Brewers' Row? Miami will find out when Concrete Beach Brewery finally opens its taproom, Social Hall, joining Wynwood Brewery and J. Wakefiled on a stretch of NW 24th Street in Wynwood.
The 11,000-square-foot facility began brewing last week. Right now, it's producing the company's two core beers, Rica IPA and Stiltsville Pilsner, for sale to local restaurants. That means Concrete Beach beers on tap will show up on menus in as early as two weeks.
The bottled versions are brewed at a state-of-the-art facility in Cincinnati and use the same recipes used in the Miami versions. The Wynwood facility doesn't have bottling capabilities. The bottled beers have been available for about six months and are sold at various locations, including Michael's Genuine Food & Drink and Publix. The brewery's long reach even extended to Walt Disney World in Orlando, where it debuted a special beer for the theme park's marathon weekend in January. The brewery also features a lab and smaller tanks designed for producing smaller, experimental brews.
Concrete Beach's taproom, named the Social Hall, is expected to open early this summer, pending final permitting.
It's expected to become an epicenter of Wynwood community, with live entertainment, beer education nights, and a circular indoor/outdoor bar that will feature a rotating lineup of Concrete Beach offerings, including an ale that will be exclusive to the Wynwood location. Expect light, drinkable beers that go down easily in Miami's subtropical climate. Social Hall manager Jesse Morris says, "The energy and culture of this city drives everything we do, and we look forward to sharing our love of craft beer with the rest of Miami."
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The brewery is also soliciting suggestions for the next great beer by holding a contest — What Brews You — to find out what Miamians like to drink. The winner will be invited to the brewery to help make his or her beer dream a reality (with the expert help of Concrete Beach's head brewer, Chris McGrath). The contest runs through May 31. To enter, submit your beer idea at concretebeachbrewery.com.
What makes Concrete Beach unique in Miami is the team behind the beer. The operation is a project of Alchemy & Science, a craft beer incubator and wholly owned subsidiary of Boston Beer Company, with years of experience to back up its state-of-the-art Wynwood location. Cofounders Alan Newman and Stacey Steinmetz have near-legendary status among the brewing community. Newman is cofounder of Magic Hat Brewing Company, and Steinmetz was one of its first employees. Together, they started Alchemy & Science to launch craft breweries like Coney Island Brewing Company, Traveler Beer Company, and Angel City.
The fact that they're setting up shop in Miami gives the 305 instant credibility as a city to watch for its emerging beer scene.