For Black Hoof Brewing Company owners Bill and Nikki Haase, the past year has been a treasure hunt of sorts, navigating the renovation of the former Caulkins Jewelers space into their new German brewpub.
The summer 2015 fire that prompted Caulkins Jewelers move out of the space provided the Haases with a blank slate with which to work. With the walls down to their studs, they were able to see wallpaper all the way from the 1800s and even had an oral history lesson on the building’s past from Stanley Caulkins, who worked in the space for more than 50 years. Before he moved in, the building was the town’s A&P grocery store.
While the construction process lasted longer than anticipated, the bare walls provided an opportunity to run electrical wiring where it was desired and put in high-speed internet connections. As a courtesy to guests, electrical outlets can be found alongside just about every seat in the brewery, allowing patrons to plug in to catch up on work or charge their cell phones.
While modernizing the space was the goal, the Haases strove to make sure the space still felt warm and inviting, like a traditional European brewpub. Two German stammtisch tables invite the brewery’s “regulars” to congregate. Ample booth and bar seating is also available throughout the space.
Black Hoof opened quietly last week with seven beers on tap, all Black Hoof brews by head brewer Bill Haase with the help of assistant head brewer Brandon Flanigin. Currently on tap are: Helles, Maibock, Marzen, Hefeweizen, Blond Ale, English Porter and Indian Pale Ale. Bavarian pretzels with dipping sauce are available for purchase, and outside food is also allowed.
Black Hoof opened its doors last weekend for a soft opening, and the Haases expect the hours to change following its June 5 grand opening.
For more information, go to blackhoofbrewing.com