As the crew at Eagle Rock Brewery readies to party for its 4th anniversary next month, the oldest brewery in the City of Los Angeles will also be celebrating another major milestone -- the announcement of a brewpub on the main drag in their namesake 'hood.
Dubbed the Eagle Rock Brewery Public House, the brand's first venture outside of its Glendale Freeway-adjacent production brewery and taproom is expected to open early next year and will take over the historic landmark at 1627 Colorado Blvd. that once housed vegetarian restaurant Fatty's.
For husband-and-wife co-owners Jeremy Raub and Ting Su, their Public House brings them full circle, back not only to a location walking distance from their home, but also the original concept they held for Eagle Rock Brewery.
"When we were pipe dreaming of starting a brewery, we wanted to do a brewpub just because we really liked the idea of that sense of community and a gathering place for the community that brewpubs provide," Raub said. "But then we realized it was going to cost a lot more money to start with a brewpub and it was going to be a lot riskier since we didn't have an established brand or any real experience in either industry."
The brewery's taproom -- built out to feel like a homey neighborhood bar -- satisfied Raub's initial intention of giving people a comfy place to talk about beer, but the itch for a brewpub remained, swelling more as the brewery began to outgrow its current space.
When Fatty's closed for good in 2012, the opportunity to move into its open, exposed-brick space kicked the pipe dreams back into high gear. The couple has been in negotiations for the last year.
"How could we pass this up?" Raub said. "It would serve dual purpose, allowing us to expand, but also allowing that brewpub concept."
Though the architects are just now digging into the possibilities for the location, it's looking as though the 6,500 square-foot compound will be able to accommodate dining and bar sections with seating for about 50 people as well as a 10 or 15-barrel brewhouse in the back that will focus more on specialty brews and seasonals.
With an active alcohol license already attached to the address, Raub only needs a few months to turn around the space and open the restaurant and bar portions of the Eagle Rock Brewery Public House. The beer manufacturing license, however, is still a headache-of-a-CUP process away, putting production on the site to sometime at the end of 2014 or early 2015.
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When it does finally open, don't expect to get burgers or fish and chips at this brewpub. Names can't be dropped quite yet, but a chef has been chosen to run the kitchen and Raub assures that the emphasis will be less on deep fried finger food and more on dishes that showcase how beer and food can work together creatively.
"We want to kind of make it a little more special, kind of like what we've done with our beers," Raub said. "Solidarty, for example, is something that grabs people's attention because maybe it shifts their perception of what beer is. We want to play on those same perception-changing ideas and pairings at the brewpub."
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