Already inundated with winery choices, Middleburg-area residents will have a second brewery to visit this time next year.
Middleburg-area residents Scott Buzzelli, a partner at Middleburg Real Estate-Atoka Properties, and Brian Yarnal presented the Town Council on Thursday night with their proposal to open the Fueled Farm Brewery about a mile east of the town limits on a 10-acre property just north of Rt. 50. The duo plans to begin construction on the taproom in late summer and open the brewery to the public by next March.
Yarnal said that Vanish Farmwoods Brewery Owner Jonathan Staples would manage Fueled Farm’s beverage production and farming while King Street Oyster Bar Owner Rick Allison would manage the food service via his food truck. He said an existing garage would be expanded to create the taproom and brewhouse, where they’ll brew some beer, while most of the production will take place at Vanish. Yarnal said that would keep the onsite structures small and allow customers more outdoor space.
He said they would offer eight menu items, two of which would be standard fare and six of which would be tapas-style plates. The two least ordered tapas plates would rotate every 60 days.
Buzzelli and Yarnal said they would convert the existing homes into an event space and overnight rental and a cottage apartment for overnight and short-term rentals, such as on Airbnb.They both plan to live on adjoining properties.
To accommodate customers, they’re planning a 1-acre, 125- to 150-car parking lot and to be open generally from 11:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. six days a week.
“I have a desire to create a space and an environment where people can meet, socialize, talk in a casual outside atmosphere,” Buzzelli said.
When Councilman Peter Leonard-Morgan asked Buzzelli and Yarnal if they felt they would be competing with Old Ox Brewery, which opened in downtown Middleburg last July—providing the town with its first and brewery option—Buzzelli said the two breweries would complement each other well.
He said Fueled Farm would be a micro-brewery, while Old Ox is more of a distribution-brewery, and that Fueled Farm would focus more on food offerings.
“I think we’re going to be complimenting each other a lot,” he said.
While VDOT has already issued the duo a permit, the Virginia Department of Health is requiring them to drill a new well to use for drinking water. They’ll also have to abandon an existing well and use it only for irrigation, since county regulations mandate that water from only one well can be used for drinking water.
Yarnal said he and Buzzelli are “eternal optimists” and that even though the COVID-19 pandemic continues to affect the world, they hope to get construction underway later this summer.