Beer & Wine

Legacy Caribbean Craft Brewery Officially Launches in Miami, but Taproom Still Not Open

Opa-locka's Legacy Caribbean Craft Brewery will officially launch its beer tonight, November 2. Beginning at 7 p.m., 305Brews (3535 NE Second Ave., Miami) in midtown will offer two of Legacy's beers. This marks the first time the beers will be poured outside of the brewery or festivals.

Legacy recently signed with Sunny Isles Beach-based Beerstream Distribution Company, and the first two beers slated for distribution are the brewery's Clubhouse Ale and Humble Noble IPA.

Beerstream is the small but growing endeavor of Brett Hubbard, a certified cicerone and former craft and specialty import manager at Gold Coast Beverage. His company distributes to Miami-Dade, Broward, and parts of West Palm Beach Counties.

Future beers for distribution include Gypsy Voodoo, a floral American pale ale; and Mulato, a porter made with Dominican coffee and bitter chocolate.

"We are extremely humbled and happy with being able to join our friends Accomplice Ciderworks, Devour Brewery, Hollywood Brewery, and Koffner Brewery in a journey of truly local flavor and true handmade craft beers," Legacy co-owner and brewer Ismael Fernandez says.

Legacy, which opened in 2013, recently relocated to 13416 NW 38th Ct. in Opa-Locka. The brewery had previously been dealing with permitting issues with the city, which was under investigation. Former City Manager David Chiverton resigned this past August amid allegations of federal corruption. Chiverton later pleaded guilty to a bribery charge. It turns out he was shaking down local businesses in exchange for permits. He and former city public works supervisor Gregory Harris had turned the public utilities department into an extortion racket, according to the Miami Herald.

But that's all in the past, and Fernandez, his wife Sonya, and his brother Hector look to the future with Legacy. The three plan to open a taproom at the brewery.

Fernandez isn't sure when that change will happen. The city still needs to approve an ordinance that would allow the brewery to be open to customers and serve beer on premises. For now, however, the brewery is open only for special events and tours.

It's a familiar tune for Fernandez, who already has experience dealing with red tape. "Opa-locka doesn't make it easy, but we aren't giving in," he says.
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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