Brewpub could be coming to Inver Grove Heights


Hannah Burlingame/Review A new brewpub may be opening in Inver Grove Heights at the former Ruby Tuesday site at 9051 Buchanan Trail.

SSP also a site of future brewing ops

 

Inver Grove Heights might have a new dining and hangout spot in the near future as talks about a brewpub heat up. 

On Jan. 14, the Inver Grove Heights City Council approved the first reading of ordinance amendments to city code that would allow brewpubs to operate in the city.

 

Changing the code

The proposed city code change related to on-sale brewpub liquor licenses and off-sale brewpub malt liquor licenses. 

City attorney Tim Kuntz said these changes would allow for a brewpub to operate within the city. 

“A brewpub is a particular type of liquor establishment that basically has three components to it,” he said.

They are a brewery, which means they produce beer on site. The second component is that they serve the beer in a restaurant setting at the brewery, and the third component is that they also sell the beer in an off-sale capacity, where patrons can buy it, unopened, and take it home.

City code currently does not address brewpubs — and even after code amendments brewpubs would require multiple licenses to operate.

The city is looking at making such changes because Lakeville Brewing Company purchased the old Ruby Tuesday site, 9051 Buchanan Trail, at Arbor Pointe. The company is proposing to turn that space into a full-fledge brewery, which will support a yearly operation of 2,000 barrels of beer with a full-service restaurant. 

Council member Rosemary Piekarski Krech said she didn’t realize how complicated it would be to clear the way for a brewpub.

“It’s worse than a regular liquor license,” she said. 

The council passed the first reading unanimously, with the goal of approving the amendments at the second reading in order to keep Lakeville Brewing Company’s development plans on track.

 

Another proposed pub

Back in November 2018, South St. Paul approved a business development loan that would be no more than $145,000 that could lead to the development of a brewery and taproom at Concord Exchange and Veteran’s Memorial Parkway. 

Ryan Garcia, Economic Development Authority executive director, said at the Nov. 5 meeting the loan would be with Big Heist Beer Company, which is a start-up business.

“It is a proposed craft brewery and taproom that has been working with the city and the developers ... for about 18 months,” he said.

Garcia said all involved parties have been working on identifying a location, which is proposed to be on a vacant lot at 161 Concord Exchange. He added a number of existing buildings on Concord Exchange and Concord Street proper were looked at before the company decided it wanted to invest in a new building.

The lot at the northeast corner of the intersection of Concord Exchange and Veterans Memorial Parkway will fully suit the start-up’s early operations, but also allow for potential expansion.

Garcia said city staff has been working with the company on a broader redevelopment scheme for the area around the site, and a development agreement adopted earlier in 2018 allows for the redevelopment of the site in a way that is consistent with what is proposed. 

Garcia said the goal is to break ground on the brewery and taproom this spring with the operation up and running by September.

 

–Hannah Burlingame can be reached at 651-748-7824 or hburlingame@lillienews.com

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