- March 13th, 2015
- Comments Off on Our Featured Brewery – Arcade Brewery
At Southport Grocery, we’ve moved to a scaled down beer list, focusing on a single, small, local brewery to cast a spotlight on their greatness and continued effort to their craft. We wanted to bring a single brewery’s work on our pedestal. Here then is our first.
There are few breweries in Illinois, let alone the country, paving a way like Arcade. Curating a strong sense of involvement and Let’s back track some though, the brewery started with artists, homebrewers and a passion to create something with a real sense of community. The smart folks that began knew they wanted to build out a following before they fell headlong into furnishing a whole room full of stainless steel. There is a lot to be said about keeping it small, handshaking your way onto taps & shelves – knowing you’ve got a brand to build before biting too much off. The entirety of their “brewery” is pictured just below, two simple fermentors. They rent time on the 20bbl system in the same room – keeping it very small and focused. Things are going to change for them soon enough, expanding out to their own space and brewhouse, but the groundwork and brand is laid already – exactly how they wanted.
But it’s that tiresome work to create a focus, like Arcade Brewery has accomplished, will not just help them but the brewing community at large – they were the first in Illinois to start as an Alternating Proprietorship, basically meaning they rent time and space from a brewery. Being the first of anything is always a bit of work, but they pushed through, showed other state’s examples, brewery growth patterns and crafted a new frontier for future breweries to sprout within established fronts. On our visit there were three other breweries all in Ale Syndicate’s space. Arcade Brewery is also the first to make community building a pivotal part of their identity – working with local artists to design stunning labels and help construct what goes into a finished beer. Their tops are collectible for swag, they hold tastings, and are generally just nice dudes.
Tag all of this together with the quite wonderful beer they make and we had to have them as a featured brewery. We love being able to work closely with the people who make the things we love and Arcade is right there. Look for them in our cooler, beer menu, and an upcoming housemade mustard.