Cocktails & Spirits

The Inside Track on Wynwood's Concrete Beach Brewery

Miami's latest about-to-open brewery, Concrete Beach Brewery, is finally closer to opening after some delays. Short Order was invited for a rare behind-the-scenes look at the construction underway in Wynwood, and a chat with president and craft veteran Alan Newman.

We meet under the slim shade outside Panther Coffee in Wynwood, the bustling and cacophonous interior forcing us into the warm summer sunshine. Newman has the air of an artisan, complete with funky circular yellow-rimmed glasses. Over some iced coffee, talk begins to focus on why he's in Miami, and what this brewery operation means for the community at large.

See also: South Florida Brew Bus Delivers South Florida's Craft Beer Craze

First, some background. Newman founded and worked for Magic Hat Brewing Company for 17 years, having started the company in 1993, and left the brewery in 2010 due to "financial reasons," as he says. According to Vermont's Seven Days, "the financial crash of 2008 thwarted his plans to merge Magic Hat with Seattle-based Pyramid Breweries, [and] he was contractually forced to sell his shares in the company."

It was then that Newman felt compelled to leave the brewing world altogether, focusing on a book tour and the lecture circuit. Longtime friend and Samuel Adams face Jim Koch, it appears, could not let his talented friend go off into the night. So what started as an endeavor with Stacey Steinmetz to try their hand in a different industry, Alchemy & Science became a subsidiary of Boston Beer Company.

The sub-company owns and markets other craft beer brands, including Coney Island Brewing Company, Angel City Brewery, The Traveler Beer Company, and now Concrete Beach Brewery.

"I'm a culture guy," Newman says. "Miami fits my mission, and I love it. It makes sense to put it here... I've been coming down to Miami for almost 60 years...Wynwood is where I'd end up coming out to drink."

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Doug Fairall

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