Idle Hands Craft Ales & Enlightenment Ales forced out of Everett, Mass. Future uncertain.

Discussion in 'New England' started by Todd, Jun 16, 2015.

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  1. Todd

    Todd Founder (6,148) Aug 23, 1996 California
    Staff Moderator Fest Crew Society

    LOCAL BREWERY FORCED OUT OF EVERETT – FUTURE UNCERTAIN

    Idle Hands Craft Ales & Enlightenment Ales Announce Shut Down of Their Everett Facility Due to Wynn Casino Project

    Everett, Mass., June 16, 2015 – Idle Hands Craft Ales LLC announced formally today the closing of their Everett, Massachusetts brewing facility due to a displacement by the Everett Wynn Casino project. The local craft brewery, recently recognized as one of the top local craft breweries in New England by Boston Magazine is one of several local businesses located at 3 Charlton Street that has been forced to vacate its location by June 30 as a result of the building being razed in favor of a construction access road for the Wynn casino project. The brewery’s future is uncertain as the owners, customers and fans await the fate of the Boston market’s first nanobrewery.

    “While we are saddened our need to move is happening this quickly, we also always knew our home on Charlton Street would not be our last. We see this change as a minor setback that just forces us to pursue the next chapter sooner,” shares founder and owner, Chris Tkach. Despite an inevitable move, Tkach and his wife were surprised when they only received 4 months formal notice to vacate in February of this year.

    Tkach has been searching for a suitable new location for 12 months now. Even if a new commercial lease were signed, moving and resuming brewery operations takes months. Not only does equipment and product need to be relocated, the business also needs to resubmit for both federal and state licensing, a process which could take up to 120 days based on the current federal estimates for license reviews.

    "Idle Hands Craft Ales & Enlightenment Ales have become two of our core brands, in the Boston market…their offerings have enriched our local beer community,” shares Suzanne Schalow, cofounder of Craft Beer Cellar, a family of independently owned craft beer retail stores that begun in Belmont. “We look forward to continuing to support this team as they transition to a new brewery and get back on-line.”

    The good news is that Idle Hands is in negotiations with a landlord for a new lease close to the Everett location but Tkach will not comment definitively “until the ink is dry”. He indicated that the staff ramped up production the last few months anticipating a period of being “off line”. They have also arranged to tenant brew at former neighbor, Night Shift Brewery until a new facility is operational. Local bars, restaurants and package stores have committed to continue selling the company’s beers though availability will be limited due to lowered production levels. “I've personally enjoyed drinking and serving both beers because of the high quality and varied mix of styles they offer. I know my customers will be saddened [by the limited offerings]…but we plan to serve their beer whenever we can get our hands on it during their transition," comments Max Toste, owner/beer manager of Deep Ellum in Allston.

    “We've put a lot of blood, sweat and frankly, personal financial investment into the brewery,” comments co-owner and wife, Grace, “and we have no intention of closing.”

    The Tkachs and their staff ask for everyone’s continued support during this transitional period. They have grand plans for their next phase and are anxious to share the journey to their new destination as it unfolds. For those interested in learning more, FAQs are posted already and you are encouraged to share along in the experience on Facebook, Twitter or their website.

    About Idle Hands Craft Ales LLC
    Idle Hands Craft Ales LLC was founded in 2010 as a privately owned, craft brewery with a production facility in Everett, Massachusetts. We were the first nanobrewery based out of the Boston area and one of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts’s smallest commercial breweries for our first few years of existence, producing only 1.5 barrels (or 46 gallons) of beer at a time. In August 2013, the brewery maintained its footprint in Everett but increased production capacity to earn status as a microbrewery. Idle Hands then partnered with the Enlightenment Ales brand in 2014, making it the only US brewery to produce biere de champagne regularly in the United States. Idle Hands has predominantly focused on Belgian inspired craft beers but recently expanded into other traditional German styles. Enlightenment Ales focus on “urban farmhouse” beers. Both beer brands are brewed, bottled and distributed all within the local Boston market. For more information about Idle Hands Craft Ales, visit www.idlehandscraftales.com, or follow them at https://www.facebook.com/IdleHandsCraftAles or https://twitter.com/idlehandsbeer. Additional information about Enlightenment can be found at http://enlightenmentales.com/.

    ###
     
  2. Todd

    Todd Founder (6,148) Aug 23, 1996 California
    Staff Moderator Fest Crew Society

    FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

    We're sure this announcement raises a lot of questions for you and we have answers. If you think of additional questions, please do not hesitate to ask at info@idehandscraftales.com and we will continue to update this site with answers.

    Q: Does this mean the end for Idle Hands/Enlightenment? Is the brewery closing completely?

    A: No, we hope not. We are aggressively in discussions with a new landlord for a lease, but until the ink is dry, we can't definitively say no. We've put a lot of blood, sweat and frankly, personal financial investment into the brewery and we have no intention of closing. As such, we are treating this as a temporary situation and have a plan for continued operations until we are able to re-open a production facility in a new location. During this interim period, we will be relocating a few of our fermenters to our neighbors at Night Shift Brewing (NSB) to tenant brew a batch or two per month. However, due to our limited capacity to brew, realistically, the breadth of our offerings will be reduced to one or two beer styles for the remainder of 2015. Also, the beers that we brew at NSB will not be from our regular lineup but will be more seasonally oriented beers. Additionally, for a variety of reasons, we do not plan to bottle any of the beers that we brew at Night Shift. However, we reserve the right to change our mind depending on how the new lease and plans materialize!

    Q: Does this mean the tasting room will close as well?

    A: Yes. Our Everett facility serves as our sole production facility and also a public tasting room. The entire building will be razed so we will no longer have any type of presence in Everett.

    The tasting room will continue to be open during regular hours of Thursdays (3-7pm), Fridays (5-8pm) and Saturdays (12-5pm) up to our last official Saturday, June 27th. Depending on inventory levels, we may opt to open for a few hours as well on Monday, June 29 and Tuesday, June 30. Stay tuned through Facebook, Twitter or our website to be in the know about additional hours through the 30th.

    Q: What does this mean for accessing your beers if the brewery location is closed?

    A: Closing our facility does not mean our beers are no longer going to be made available. On the contrary! While you will no longer be able to go to the brewery for tastings, growler fills or retail sales, you will still find both brands in the market. We have let our retail/wholesale customers know of our plans and they have assured us they will continue to buy our beers.

    In anticipation of having to be “offline” for some time, we have planned accordingly and stocked up on bottles. We have ensured a reasonable amount to get us through most of the summer for current Idle Hands beers. With regards to Enlightenment, we have brewed a series of Brett-aged saisons that we will periodically release throughout the rest of 2015. This means you should continue to see Idle Hands at your favorite beer stores in bottle format and bars/restaurants on draft.

    With regards to draft, our interim plan is limited due to the ability to continuously brew. Draft beer has a limited shelf life so our offerings (amount and variety) will be less than our normal availability. We will attempt to brew at Night Shift as much as possible to meet demand, but understandably they need the equipment for their own beers. Ultimately, you may see less of Idle Hands "out there", so purchase our beer whenever you see it on draft while you can!

    You can also still count on us to attend as many beer festivals as possible so that you can taste our beers and say hello as you’ve been accustomed to at the brewery. However, again due to our limited ability to brew, you will only see a few styles of beer at these types of events.

    Q: What is happening with your staff? Will you have to lay them off.

    A: As far as we know, they aren’t going anywhere! Idle Hands as a business will continue to operate and there is a lot we will do to continue or progress. We are a small business so our staff have learned to wear many hats. We have made arrangements with them to ensure they continue on our payroll but their scope of responsibilities may differ temporarily.

    As luck would have it, Ben has the opportunity to take a sabbatical overseas to gain international experience at a brewery in Denmark. Chris will step in to brew (once again!) while we tenant brew at NSB. Brett will be using his social media picture taking skills to new heights to help us continue to get our name out on social media/marketing/events and both Josiah and Derek will be helping us to figure out what we are going to do with all of our future new space and perhaps merchandise too!

    Plus, there will be a lot of moving of equipment, stock, painting, etc. to keep them all in shape.

    Q: I am a 2015 Enlightened Hands Society member, what does that mean for the remaining two releases for the year?

    A: Never fear. We are planners and you will get the beer we promised! Investment in EHS, whether 2014 or 2015 members, has gone a long way to help us with these plans, believe it or not! We have already brewed the final releases for 2015. One has been bottled and the other is happily resting in barrels and we will bottle it once we get up and running at the new location. And we are committed to having our remaining two release parties as well, ideally in our new space. If for some reason we are not in a our new location in a timely manner, we will make other arrangements but still plan on having a release event.

    For those of you who have not picked up your 2015 releases (to date) prior to the closing of Charlton Street, we will make special arrangements whereby you can pick them up at our new location once we are in the space or elsewhere, if we need a contingency plan.

    Q: Can you tell us about the new location and what it will be like?

    A: We don’t want to jinx ourselves, but we promise our next phase will be a vast improvement to what Charlton Street is/was and we are sure you will be excited to visit us frequently. We are going to remain "local" so hopefully not too far of a stone's throw away from our cozy home in Everett. We know in our heart that when we emerge on the other side that we’ll be in a much better position to really up our game. In general, think nicer facility (with bathrooms), bigger brewhouse (more beer/different offerings), space for some barrel-aged beer that we can finally sell beyond the tasting room and most importantly, a comfortable space for all of YOU to enjoy our beers onsite.

    We have some grand plans for our new place and we look forward to sharing them with everyone once we feel comfortable that it will become a reality.

    Q: When will you/we know more to share? How can I stay up to date with updates?

    A: You can stay in touch by visiting www.idlehandscraftales.com or following us at https://www.facebook.com/IdleHandsCraftAles or https://twitter.com/idlehandsbeer. Additional information about Enlightenment can be found at http://enlightenmentales.com/.

    We are hopeful that we can finalize a lease by the end of June. In the meantime, we are planning for that success so that we're ready to go with our next phase with full throttle. Once we know more, you will know more. We'll send emails, post on social media and our website. And we're not going away - seek us out at festivals and for tastings. Oddly enough, you may see us "out there" more! You may have more questions and we encourage you to ask them. This situation has not been easy for our family or our staff and we acknowledge it impacts you too. However, we remain optimistic that once we secure the lease and build out the space, Idle Hands will

    emerge stronger than before. In advance of what is yet to come, we appreciate your support over these trying months!

    We’ll continue to keep you abreast of news as we have it but if you have any questions we didn't already answer, don't hesitate to reach out to us directly at info@idehandscraftales.com or in person at 3 Charlton Street through June 30th.

    Q: What can I do to ensure Idle Hands continues to brew my favorite beers?

    A: You know our story. Please share it and share what you love about us to keep us going. You know how we’ve built our brewery and have bootstrapped the operation. You've met us - our family, the brewery staff. We have been the success that we are due in part to your support of us. During this transitional period, we ask that you continue to support us by continuing to buy our beers where and when you can, share our story and beers with your friends and keep mention of us as players in the Boston craft beer market. With all of the newbies cropping up, we need to ensure Idle Hands, as the first nanobrewery in the Boston area, remains top of everyone's minds. We may actually have more time to market/advertise/share on social media, but we will need your help as well. We'll continue to attend festivals, hold tastings and brew/sell beer. We just won't have a physical location where you can really feel our story so we hope you can continue to tell it without the luxury of a brick and mortar space for awhile.

    Also, keep your fingers crossed for us and know that we’ll come out on the other side stronger, bigger and better.

    Then clear our your fridge and beer cellars because you will want to ensure you have plenty of room for all of the future beer we’ll be brewing!

    ###
     
  3. Shaymus

    Shaymus Disciple (367) May 16, 2009 Massachusetts

    Cant wait!!.....Best of Luck
     
  4. robNSB

    robNSB Initiate (150) Oct 6, 2009 Massachusetts

    Tough spot for Chris and Ben to be in but those guys are fighters. They make excellent beer and are excellent people. I have no doubt that they will thrive after this transition. The Night Shift Crew is really happy we can help them out with tenant brewing too. Glad we can keep those Idle Hands/Enlightenment tasty beers flowing.
     
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  5. rhino88888888

    rhino88888888 Initiate (122) Dec 12, 2013 Massachusetts
    Trader

    Good luck Chris and Ben! I've been enjoying my membership in the Enlightened Hands Society. Great beers and fun, intimate parties. I'll miss your quirky industrial space on Charlton St but I'm sure you are ready for a nicer brewery with room to grow. I'll be looking for your "beers in exile" on draft and will be first in line when you reopen in your new space!
     
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  6. Sheppard

    Sheppard Meyvn (1,307) Mar 16, 2013 Virginia
    Trader

    I knew about the eviction, but I did not hear about Ben's opportunity in Denmark. I'm really excited for him. That's great and Denmark is an awesome country.

    I wish Chris, Ben, Brett, and Co the best of luck.
     
  7. GiantCogs

    GiantCogs Initiate (102) Oct 25, 2012 Massachusetts

    One of the best local brewers. Good luck.
     
  8. AlcahueteJ

    AlcahueteJ Poo-Bah (1,612) Dec 4, 2004 Massachusetts
    Society

    Sounds like time for some collaboration brews...:wink:
     
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  9. rhino88888888

    rhino88888888 Initiate (122) Dec 12, 2013 Massachusetts
    Trader

    To every cloud there is a silver lining. From the Enlightment Ales FB page this morning. I'll be there with my Nordic bells on!

    Huzzah! It's A Midsummer Night's Nordic Saison Party & "Titania" Release at Atwood's Tavern!

    To celebrate the release of our second batch of "Titania" we've gathered a handful of other Nordic Saisons from our favorite New England breweries. To make things even more interesting, we've somehow shanghaied Anders Kissmeyer, the jolly Danish brewer behind the Nordic beer movement, into joining us for a night of Nordic revelry on the Atwoods patio.

    Your ticket includes admission, a limited edition (AKA we only ordered three cases of them) Enlightenment Ales glass, and a first pour of beer. In addition to "Titania" we'll be featuring "Nordic Saison" from Hill Farmstead Brewery, Cambridge Brewing Company, and Kissmeyer Beer & Brewing, as well as the Harpoon Brewery/CBC/Kissmeyer Nordic Saison. If that wasn't enough we'll also have a handful of other special farmhouse ales from Enlightenment, CBC, and Harpoon.

    If you love Nordic Saison, A Midsummer Night's Dream, or just garden parties, join us at Atwood's July 1st. Tickets are limited and going fast!

    http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/1753603
     
  10. abagofit

    abagofit Initiate (184) Oct 31, 2014 Massachusetts

    WOW thanks so much for sharing, just bought my ticket, this sounds amazing!
     
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  11. bostonwolf

    bostonwolf Initiate (134) Jan 20, 2015 Massachusetts

    I'm hoping beyond hope that they are able to relocate to the small industrial park where Nightshift is located. Because having a space in greater Boston similar to the Allagash/Bissell Brothers/Foundation/Austin Street would be fantastic for all of us as beer consumers.

    I'm going to go stock up on Idle Hands and get a few bottles to send down to a buddy in NC.
     
  12. rhino88888888

    rhino88888888 Initiate (122) Dec 12, 2013 Massachusetts
    Trader

    A couple more updates on the from the most recent Idle Hands email newsletter.

    The End.
    As part of our final farewell to Charlton Street, the very last batch we brewed will be released Friday. It is a double IPA aptly named "The End.". Full of hop forward citrus and tropical fruit notes it is brewed with plenty of Chinook, Centennial, Nelson Sauvin and Galaxy hops for everyone. It will also debut around town on draft and at the Drink Craft Beer: Beer & BBQ fest this weekend. Yes, we said we would never brew an IPA... well, sometimes you just gotta give the people what they want!

    Special Discounts on Bottles
    We'd rather have you move our beer instead of us. That being said, starting this week when you buy 6 or more bottles you are entitled to a 10% discount. Buy 12 or more bottles and we'll give you 15% off. Mix and match, full cases, limited barrel-aged beer, it doesn't matter. It's all eligible.
     
  13. duchessedubourg

    duchessedubourg Aspirant (263) Nov 2, 2007 Vermont

    This is sad news - they are two of my favorite MA breweries! I hope they find safe haven in new, stable digs soon. I wil save my Enlightenment bottles to open and toast them when that is accomplished - best of luck to them in the meantime!
     
  14. Sheppard

    Sheppard Meyvn (1,307) Mar 16, 2013 Virginia
    Trader

    This would be cool, but I'm doubtful that it would happen. Remember, NS and Idle Hands shared the closing space/building prior to Night Shift moving to their new space. We kind of had the Industrial Park thing.

    I'm really looking forward to the Nordic Saison celebration and I'll probably have to head over to the brewery to grab some of The End (and some bottles).
     
    bostonwolf likes this.
  15. bostonwolf

    bostonwolf Initiate (134) Jan 20, 2015 Massachusetts

    I actually wasn't aware of that, I'm a relative craft beer noob.

    I wasn't suggesting they move in with NS, but in some of what seem to be empty spaces nearby. There is a brewery building out in that neighborhood right now (Bone Up Brewing) and a distillery either there already or in the planning stages.
     
  16. rknrll

    rknrll Initiate (50) Jul 13, 2009 Massachusetts

    And it sucked over there.
     
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  17. bostonwolf

    bostonwolf Initiate (134) Jan 20, 2015 Massachusetts

    Could be really good news if they land in a better, more accessible location. That area of Everett isn't exactly pleasant.
     
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  18. Sheppard

    Sheppard Meyvn (1,307) Mar 16, 2013 Virginia
    Trader

    I agree with this. Knowing the parties involved, it sucks for the immediate time being, but as you said, it could be a blessing in disguise if they get a better space/location. I feel like getting out to Denmark could help Ben too, not necessarily in terms of current options, but future beers. We'll have to wait and see.
     
  19. witts2000

    witts2000 Initiate (0) May 13, 2015 Massachusetts

    Just after I had my first Hofmann....damn. Good luck Idle Hands.
     
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  20. FrankLloydMike

    FrankLloydMike Devotee (417) Aug 16, 2006 Massachusetts

    Sad news, but I hope this works out for them in the long run. I'm especially a fan of the Enlightenment beers, but both breweries/brands are up there among Boston area breweries. I hope Ben has a great time on his sabbatical, and that Enlightenment/Idle Hands finds an even better new home... maybe even in JP or some other T-accessible, but brewery-lacking part of the city.
     
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  21. sliberty

    sliberty Initiate (89) Dec 1, 2011 Massachusetts

    Really sorry to hear this. Please come to Salem, MA!
     
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  22. Patches826

    Patches826 Savant (962) Aug 28, 2013 Massachusetts

    Curious to see if the two brands stay together through this or if Enlightenment splits off and finds its own place once Ben gets back.
     
  23. rhino88888888

    rhino88888888 Initiate (122) Dec 12, 2013 Massachusetts
    Trader

  24. Patrick_in_DC

    Patrick_in_DC Initiate (0) May 8, 2015 Virginia

    Dear God I was so glad to get there at the end of May as I did. No wonder you guys were very touchy about the current facility and the tentativeness of finding a new one (touchy isn't the right word... but anyways...)

    I still stand that was the 2nd worst building I've been in short of when I had to use the bathroom of an abandoned industrial building while working at a fire detector company. (They didn't want to build a new test unit in their new office complex.)
     
  25. EnronCFO

    EnronCFO Zealot (562) Mar 29, 2007 Massachusetts

    Testy a better word? I had one negative experience years ago and never returned to Idle Hands.
     
  26. Patrick_in_DC

    Patrick_in_DC Initiate (0) May 8, 2015 Virginia

    My experience was positive... it was more "hedging"... I didn't know about this casino stuff. It was sort of the "don't jinx the thing" type of stuff.
     
  27. EnronCFO

    EnronCFO Zealot (562) Mar 29, 2007 Massachusetts

    Gotcha.
     
  28. BRYeleJR

    BRYeleJR Disciple (359) May 18, 2013 Massachusetts
    Trader

    The walk to the "bathroom" -- being charitable -- was so dicey that Night Shift Brewing used to have several signs with arrows pointing you toward the men's and women's room. It's still the only bathroom that -- when I eventually got there -- there was a sign proclaiming "YOU MADE IT!"

    ###

    One related (and, yes, nerdy) note on the new potential Idle Hands location: As a (former, as of two days ago) resident of Malden, I got really into reading the licensing board minutes to see if any new or interesting watering holes may be coming to the area. The minutes from a April 14 meeting read, in part:

    "Chris Webb brought up a micro-brewery. ... The place in Everett is thinking of coming to Malden, and he wants to make sure the new regulations will not inhibit this. ... Malden has never had anything like a micro-brewery and the Board could grant a license with conditions."

    An economic development employee with the city "...has been working with the Everett establishment and they are trying to land a building on Commercial Street owned by National Grid but if that falls through they will have to look for another place for them."​

    SOURCE: http://www.cityofmalden.org/sites/default/files/llb_minutes041415.pdf

    The only two breweries in Everett I know about are Night Shift and Idle Hands. Assume this means Idle Hands' mystery location is Malden? Anything is possible at this point, but thought I'd bring this up for those wondering where the new location may be... from what the owners have said, they're looking at "another space nearby."

    ###

    FWIW, I've probably stopped into Idle Hands three or four times over the past year. Always thought the guys were great and service was quick to get a growler fill and get going.
     
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  29. robNSB

    robNSB Initiate (150) Oct 6, 2009 Massachusetts

    We actually took those signs from the old space and framed them. They are hanging on the wall en-route to our current far superior bathrooms. Its a humble reminder to ourselves and our long time customers of where we came from and how far we have come.

    I felt bad that customers had to ever experience that old bathroom but myself and our crew had to use them all day every day. It was a nightmare especially in the winter when the toilet bowl would freeze solid and you were shivering to death. Fun times.
     
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  30. ljkeats

    ljkeats Zealot (554) Jun 27, 2007 Massachusetts
    Fest Crew Society

    Thanks, Nice find. Still a bit shaky on how the Board is looking at this. (The section 12 bs section 19 stuff)
    And you left out the most important part "They can seek a license to pour what they brew from the local board".
    It'd be great if they could serve pints of their own stuff, rather than just samples.

    Wonder how the May Council Meeting went?
     
  31. Sheppard

    Sheppard Meyvn (1,307) Mar 16, 2013 Virginia
    Trader

    Don't jinx it.
     
  32. messrock

    messrock Initiate (83) Dec 9, 2010 Massachusetts

    Minutes for May's meeting were scheduled for approval in Tuesday night's meeting. When Wonder/Hostess cleared out of their factory in Eastern Ave I thought it would be a perfect place for a brewery. Assuming the NGrid site on Commercial being talked about means the ballpark is off the table…
     
  33. BRYeleJR

    BRYeleJR Disciple (359) May 18, 2013 Massachusetts
    Trader

    It's a much easier walk now to get up from drinking a beer by the open garage door and immediately see the "YOU MADE IT!" sign. Definitely a nice feature at the new place (as is the "PIRATE" door, which I assume is an homage to Charlie in It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia?)

    Unfortunately, the city is a little slow at putting meeting minutes online, but I assume they'll be going on shortly. Not sure what happened at Tuesday's meeting, as I've moved out of the city. Maybe @messrock has a point and minutes need to be approved before they can be posted online?

    They pushed the ballpark out again until April 2016 for the "first pitch" date, but I think it's pretty unrealistic at this point. Their original opening date was April 2014, and it's not clear that they've made any progress since then. The last news update to the press archive on their website happened in 2012: http://www.maldenpark.com/press-archive.html

    Not sure how they'd site the brewery at the NGrid site on Commercial, as it seems it's way more space than they need. I thought the site Redbones tried to go into a while ago -- the former Rosebud Farms site on Commercial -- would be perfect for a brewery, but I'm sure watching the problems Redbones had have turned off some potential tenants from using that space.
     
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  34. robNSB

    robNSB Initiate (150) Oct 6, 2009 Massachusetts

    Yup, its a Charlie reference. haha. Cheers!
     
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  35. meefmoff

    meefmoff Devotee (474) Jul 6, 2014 Massachusetts
    Trader

    It sucks that they had such little notice about the need to move, but I doubt anybody's going to mourn the demolition of that particular building. Anyone who hasn't been there probably thinks people are exaggerating about the bathroom, but they're not. Think 'Trainspotting'.

    Hopefully they'll be on to bigger and better spaces with as little fuss as possible. Both the beer and the staff deserve nothing less. Kudos to NS for helping their old neighbors in the meantime.
     
    robNSB likes this.
  36. messrock

    messrock Initiate (83) Dec 9, 2010 Massachusetts

    That ballpark has been doomed since the city wouldn't take the Spadafora land by eminent domain. So, we keep the shitty junkyard on brown land.

    I can only imagine how crazy the Rosebud people are. They'll never lease that space now.
     
  37. huuvola

    huuvola Initiate (134) Oct 29, 2005 Massachusetts

    Ben posted a note on Facebook last night that indicates he won't be returning to Idle Hands after the sabbatical (unless I'm totally misreading this). That's a big bummer for me. I love Enlightenment. (But I also greatly enjoy Idle Hands, and will continue to support them in their new location.)
    www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=970102373034837&_rdr

    Excerpt:
    ....Again, while this may be end of the "weird-rustic-urban-production brewery" form of Enlightenment Ales, it is most certainly not the end for Enlightenment. I will return. Enlightenment will return. Given the opportunity to again be a student, to learn, to ask questions, and to immerse myself in a different brewing culture, I intend to take what I've gleaned from my travels abroad and pour it into Enlightenment back here in New England, hopefully in a more pub-like setting....
     
  38. kinopio

    kinopio Aspirant (276) Apr 30, 2009 Massachusetts

    Looking forward to the bottles they are releasing. Enlightenment is definitely one of the most underrated breweries around.
     
  39. EnronCFO

    EnronCFO Zealot (562) Mar 29, 2007 Massachusetts

    I don't know Ben, but I've had and enjoyed his beers. He comes off as a perfectionist (in a good way) and his beers are always well crafted with body and depth superior the one-note beers we get from many other brewers of his size. Trying to take that level of craft and turn it into a brewpub model would be difficult to achieve. Unless of course he plans to sign on to an already existing brewpub to expand their program into higher quality beers.
     
  40. huuvola

    huuvola Initiate (134) Oct 29, 2005 Massachusetts

    I think that's a nod to his time at Cambridge Brewing Company, where they do a great job of maintaining a high level of great, innovative beers (and head brewer Will isn't bogged down with also trying to run the staff/restaurant side of the equation). I'm sure Ben would enjoy getting back into that type of environment -- not necessarily building a brewpub from the ground up.
     
    FrankLloydMike likes this.
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