The momentum in local brewing is undeniable. Northwest Arkansas is already home to seven breweries, and a few more will be firing up their mash tuns for the first time in the weeks ahead.
Columbus House Brewery
We’ve already introduced you to Columbus House Brewery, but owners Jason Corral and Carey Ashworth tell me they have experienced some of the inevitable delays associated with starting a brewery. They were hoping to open in July, but are now pushing the official opening to late August or sometime shortly thereafter. All of the brewing equipment has arrived, however, and things appear to be shaping up nicely on the inside of the building at 701 W. North St. in Fayetteville.
Bike Rack Brewing Company
Bike Rack Brewing Company, a new brewery located at 410 SW A St. in Bentonville’s downtown arts district, is also close to opening its doors. The brewery recently hosted an open house to give craft beer enthusiasts a sneak peek at the tasting room and brewhouse. I spoke to one of the brewery’s five partners – Andy Nielsen – and he said Bike Rack will be a true “nano” brewery, producing 3 barrels of beer at a time. Look for a pale ale, an IPA, and a cream ale when they get things up and running later this summer.
Bentonville Brewing Company
Bentonville Brewing Company is another new brewery on the horizon, albeit a more distant horizon than the two already mentioned. Founder Phil Treadwell told me the brewery will be on the edge of the downtown area in the new market district. He is actually taking possession of the new space today and will soon start on the build-out. Permit applications have been submitted to the appropriate state and federal agencies, and Treadwell said he hopes to be brewing beer come fall.
There is a lot going on with the local beer culture right now. Three new breweries, relaxed regulations on growler sales, and a continuous stream of fresh and tasty beer from the guys (and gals) who have already established themselves as local brewers. It’s a great time to be a craft beer fan in Northwest Arkansas!