Last week, we kicked off a four-part series exploring the most intriguing and promising work-in-progress brewery-owned venues in San Diego County. In this, the second installment, we affix our horizon-trained line of sight below Interstate 8. (In case you missed it, click the following link for a list of the most intriguing brewing projects from North County.)
North Park Beer Co., North Park: This project was the talk of the town for years, even before headman and homebrewing all-star Kelsey McNair had located a place to house his community-labeled commercial brewery. Now that he has that space, a former gymnasium on University Avenue, anticipation is reaching a fever pitch. But there’s a little more waiting to do, as grand scale renovations that will include a two-story tasting room experience and subterranean barrel cellar will take some time. The waiting should be worth it, however, as McNair’s award-winning Hop Fu! IPA will finally be available to more than just the beer judges who regularly award it gold in high-profile homebrewing competitions.
Brewery Igniter, North Park: Like many, developer H.G. Fenton recognizes the impact of the local brewing industry and the potential to profit from it by providing resources to its member companies. As such, it is installing two brew-ready business park suites in the Beeramar area. Those fermentoriums have been snatched up by Amplified Ale Works and newcomer Pure Project Brewing, encouraging H.G. Fenton to build another Brewery Igniter campus in another beer-dazzled San Diego neighborhood—North Park. Details are scarce on this project, but leasing facilities offering full brewing capabilities right off the bat seems a sound business model that should help new and established brewing companies make their dreams come true.
ChuckAlek Independent Brewers, North Park: Perhaps this piece should have been titled Best Beer Futures: North Park, for it would seem this already beery part of town will continue to get even beerier. Already home to three satellite tasting rooms (Belching Beaver Brewery, Modern Times Beer, Rip Current Brewing Co.), North Park will welcome one of the hardest-to-visit breweries in the county, Ramona-based ChuckAlek Independent Brewers. The easterly mom-and-pop raised its visibility by winning the 2014 edition of Boston Beer Co.’s Brewing the American Dream competition, and looks poised to keep its star on the rise with this bold expansion into the urban core.
NOTE: The items above have been selected from a list of public projects. There are a number of projects that are quite exciting throughout San Diego, but cannot be disclosed as they are confidential in nature and must be kept under wraps by request of the business owners.