Friends and fans filled the new Chetco Brewing Co. tap room Tuesday afternoon.
The new location, 830 Railroad St. near the South Coast Humane Society, includes multiple rooms, a game area and an upstairs. Large windows provide views and sunlight, a stark contrast to the previously cramped tap room behind Kuhn Thai on Chetco Avenue.
Owners Alex Carr-Frederick and her husband and brewer Michael Frederick said they plan to move the brewing equipment to the new location also.
“We’re going to have a deck with an ocean view, you’ll get to watch the brewing process, and we’ll have this great space for community fun,” Carr-Frederick said.
Bartender Scott Hahn said prepping the new building and moving everything was total chaos.
“If you were here yesterday, you wouldn’t have been too sure about us opening today,” bartender Loretta Alcala said.
Carr-Frederick said a huge crew showed up to help at 7:30 in the morning. “I never felt so loved in my life.”
“We have great people, including new staff and contractors, just phenomenal help, and that is why we are here, great community support,” Frederick said.
Tuesday’s soft opening was announced through email and Facebook, but Carr-Frederick said they plan a grand opening block party in April to coincide with the Beat the Brewers Relay.
Frederick brewed a new beer, Wagons Ho Wheat, to commemorate the move. Wagons Ho Wheat, like all Chetco beers, is a vegan beer, Frederick said.
“We are vegans,” he said. “So we brew vegan beer and we will be adding a vegan food truck in one of our bays.”
Plans include multiple food trucks on a rotating basis.
Signs still invite customers to bring well-behaved dogs and several customers Wednesday had leashed dogs by their side.
Bill Bourgeois, in town to steelhead fish with his wife, came in off the river and was joking about drinking “that logger pale.”
He said he tried a Chetco beer at Catalyst Seafood, and it was so good he had to come try the others.
“This is great beer and nice people, and that just makes a day,” Bourgeois said.
Chetco Brewing Company began in August 2012 and tapped its first keg of Willa Nelson IPA on April 19, 2013.
Reach Boyd C. Allen at firstname.lastname@example.org .