After a presentation given by Rob McGowan Monday afternoon, the Cleveland City Council must decide if it wants to pass an ordinance which would allow a “brewpub” to open in the downtown area.
A brewpub or brew house differs from a bar or growler store because the beverages sold are produced on-site and not shipped in. Customers can then sample different beers before they decide what they want to purchase.
Mr. McGowan discussed how the production and consumption of craft beers has risen sharply in the last 24 years. He said that he wanted to create a brew house where people could come and sample a variety of these locally made beers.
In the East Tennessee area alone, there are at least seven successful brew houses, with three in Chattanooga. In Atlanta, there are more than 15.
For this to happen, the city must create a special beverage permit to allow for sampling. Currently, there are three types of permits available. A class three permit allows for the sale of alcohol in specific serving sizes, such as in a restaurant or bar, but not for sampling like Mr. McGowan proposed in his business model. Another permit allows for the sale of alcohol but not for the consumption, as in a grocery store.
Mr. McGowan said that a brew house would bring more culture to the downtown area and enhance an already “artsy” section of Cleveland. He also pointed out that a brew house would not only sell alcoholic beverages; locally produced sodas would be sold as well, so there would be something for everyone.