Hotly anticipated Detroit microbrewery, Eastern Market Brewing Co., is putting the finishing touches on its buildout in expectation of a late-September debut. The taproom, located in a former two-story food processing facility at 2515 Riopelle St., is expected to feature between 9 and 12 beers and an international street food truck helmed by chef Jonathan Kung.
Partners Dayne Bartscht, Devin Drowley, and Paul Hoskin, began developing the project in July 2016 and tell Eater they’re projected to wrap up the buildout within the next two weeks. Once the brewery passes its final inspections and acquires a brewing license, head brewer Hazen Schumacher (formerly Atwater, Bell’s, and Brew Detroit) can begin preparing the first batches of beer.
Eastern Market Brewing Co. will be opening with room to grow when it debuts this fall. The ground floor will have a German beer hall feel with brewing equipment lining one wall and two rows of long communal tables filling the center of the building. The bar is located towards the back of the brewery with 20 taps (enough to devote more than one tap to more popular beers) and a large mural of the company’s elephant mascot along the wall. The space is also outfitted with two sets of garage doors facing Riopelle Street and the alley adjacent to the building allowing Eastern Market visitors easy access during the day. Renovations of the building’s second floor will be completed at a later date.
In addition to the original space, Eastern Market Brewing Co. also acquired a neighboring building on Riopelle that was previously used as storage for market vendors. The group recently added a door next to the company’s brewing equipment to combine the two space. The partners plan to use the 1,300-square-foot area with high ceilings as events and overflow space for the current taproom as well as storage for additional brewing equipment. “We'll expand our brewing capacity and have some tanks in here and maybe some barrels,” Hoskin says.
In terms of beers, Eastern Market Brewing Co. plans to offer traditional true-to-style beers on tap as well as “bastardized” versions that utilize market ingredients.
Hoskin and Bartsch also have also acquired the former Fat Panda food truck last spring and are partnering with Eastern Market area chef Jonathan Kung on an street food venture called the Elephant Shack. Kung tells Eater the menu will offer “accessible bar fare” with international influences. “I want keep the options and format simple, but the flavors themselves might be a little surprising to some,” he says. “It's definitely a complimentary project to the brewery. The food will serve the beer and do it well.”
According to Hoskin and Bartscht, Eastern Market Brewing Co. is aiming to open during Eastern Market After Dark on September 28. The food truck is currently in the process of getting reviewed for licensing and may make an appearance during the brewery’s initial launch. Depending on how much beer is sold during the opening event, the brewery may potentially go on hiatus while it replenishes its stocks. Stay tuned for more updates closer to the opening.
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