New Brewery on the Block
When Steve Wells worked in the Saranac Building during his plumber apprenticeship in 2007, he didn’t know that he would co-launch Spokane’s first green nano-brewery right next door. Yet this is exactly what happened when he teamed up with long-time friend and brewing partner, Dan Dvorak. Their business, the Black Label Brewing Company, will move into the new building at 19 West Main in the spring of 2014.
“Our goal is to bring the fun of home brewing to a commercial scale,” said Dan. Think small batches, revolving taps, and session brews. Think tap house atmosphere where casual consumers and experienced brewers can commune. Also think sustainable.
Dan and Steve decided to unite their passion for beer with their desire to use local, organic, and homegrown ingredients. They grow nine varieties of hops and manage their own bee hives in Garden Springs. Last year they launched a successful Kickstarter campaign, which they used to raise capital. Now, with the opportunity to set up shop in the soon-to-be-named building at 19 West Main, they are well on their way to brewing and serving their beer with green technologies.
“We’ve wanted to be a part of something like this,” Dan said, referring to the environmentally sustainable design of the Community Building, the Saranac, and 19 West. He is also excited to be moving into one of Spokane’s most vibrant blocks.
Now that the hops have been harvested, Dan and Steve are busy brewing beer. And, they have already begun to daydream about new projects they would like to take on after they finish designing and moving into their new location. For example, they are simmering up plans for an on-site bicycle mill, gluten free brews, and root beer for the kids. Also, they envision a malting facility where they can process their own grain.
“We want to know everything that happens, from seed to glass,” explained Steve. “We want the satisfaction of looking someone in the eye and saying this is where your beer came from.”
For now you can check out the Black Label Brewing Company on Facebook, where you can learn about their Honey Kilsch and Mud Bogg. If you can’t wait until spring to sample their brews, you can find their Reese’s Red Ale in the bratwurst at Sante.