The popular Mystic Brewery on Williams Street will be taking a step in a new direction this coming Wednesday, June 18, when it opens a beer cafe where full pours of several popular, locally-made beers will be available.
Founder Bryan Grenhagen told the Record that the popularity of their tasting room – which has been established for a few years now – had grown to the point that they wanted to offer customers the ability to have a full glass of beer, and eventually, some light food.
Currently, customers can taste beers in 4 ounce glasses in order to purchase bottles.
“The response to this announcement has been huge and we’re reeling from the numbers of people who are excited about this,” he said. “What you see in Belgium paired with a brewery is a little beer cafe. It’s like a tasting room, but you can enjoy a full pour of beer and relax. The license we have would be like for any bar that has several beers, but it’s specific to a farmer/brewer, which is what we are. People will be able to come in and order a beer and relax while they drink it. What it isn’t is a pub or an environment to chug a bunch of beer. It’s very casual and it’s really about enjoying it.”
The new configuration at the Brewery will be open Wednesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Down the road, Grenhagen said they plan to add light fare like cheese, cold cuts and bread.
“We do plan to get a common victuallers license to offer some food,” he said. “We just want people to be able to have something in their stomachs while they enjoy the beer. There’s no regulation for that, but we thought it would be good. Plus, some of the combinations are pretty awesome. Sometimes if you pair a certain cheese with a certain beer it’s like magic – something totally different happens.”
Grenhagen said the idea is certainly inspired by the breweries in Belgium, where his style of beer is typically brewed. However, it also took some queues from Brooklyn.
“We looked a lot at what the Brooklyn Brewery did in Williamsburg,” he said. “To us, it seemed a lot like Chelsea and something we could emulate.”
Grenhagen said it also isn’t something he ever envisioned when starting the brewery in 2011 on Williams Street in an industrial building. However, as word spread about the quality and uniqueness of his product, people began to want to visit the brewery and take more than a sample.
“Samples just aren’t the way to drink a beer,” he said. “You can sample wine, and 4 ounces is a full pour of spirits, but for beer, especially a table beer, you need a full mug,” he said. “People who came in wanted to sit down and enjoy a beer here. It seems like we have a lot of interest with people coming in from One North. It’s an attraction for them and we get a lot of interest from Admiral’s Hill and other people from Chelsea who typically roll in after work. We’re very excited for the 18th.”
Meanwhile, however, the primary business of the brewery remains making top shelf beer, and it is distributed throughout Massachusetts and Vermont. Specialty beers, however, are available as far away as California and Washington state.
The doors will open for full pour service at 11 a.m. next Wednesday, June 18