An interesting hype has been building around the Blue Blaze Brewing beer house, still in the planning stages in Charlotte. It seems like more than just a brewery project, which is cool. It’s a neighborhood project for starters, and we like the hiking/biking theme co-founders and neighbors Craig Nunn and Sven Giersmann are embracing. Blue Blaze Brewing will be located at the old Savona Mill, an early 20th century vintage textile mill in the historic West End neighborhood, just across the street from the entrance to the Stewart Creek Greenway, which is actually about a 15-minute nature walk from Uptown (keep that theme top of mind).
First off, Blue Blaze Brewing hopes to “blaze new trails” (sorry, had to do it) and transform the fun and eclectic West End neighborhood into a brewery and entertainment destination for families and craft beer lovers alike. Argos Real Estate Advisors, known for its work in the South End, is owner and developer of the project.
Secondly, the brewery location was partially picked because the current trailhead of Stewart Creek Greenway is less than one mile away from Frazier Park in Uptown, so Blue Blaze aims to encourage pedestrian and bicycle traffic among communities along Mecklenburg’s greenway system.
“Trail culture is embedded in everything we do,” Nunn said. “We believe trail enthusiasts will appreciate the adjacency of the trails and parks and the use of sustainable methods in our beer-making process.”
Blue Blaze plans to deliver kegs to local businesses and restaurants in the Uptown area using custom-built Bullitt cargo bicycles. The company will install several bike racks at its taproom and plans to include a Charlotte B-Cycle check-in station at the brewery. Excited yet? Well, the wait is just a season away. Just the other day, Blue Blaze received approval from the city of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County to begin build out of its 8,000-square-foot brewing facility and taproom with plans to open in the spring of 2016.
Blue Blaze Brewing’s architectural plans include community-style tables, coffee-bar railings and seating for approximately 125 including the mezzanine area. The taproom will have large views of the adjacent park’s green space. The brewery also plans on showcasing its 15-barrel brewhouse and fermenters; visitors approaching from Turner St. and the parking area will be able to see into the brewery. The taproom entrance will be flanked by an outdoor patio area that overlooks some green space along Stewart Creek. That extended green space will host fire pit nights and other outdoor activities. Sign us up.
In the taproom, guests can enjoy selections from 20 draft taps and two nitro taps pouring a variety of beers. Its intended core beers will include an altbier, amber, black IPA, Dortmunder lager and a milk stout. The remaining taps will be served by seasonal and special releases (based on innovations in American, German and English styles) as well as guest taps from other local brewers. The group’s also hoping to source local.
“We plan to brew with locally sourced, pesticide-free ingredients whenever they are available,” Nunn said.