Can Your Brew Space be an Event Space?

Some people just love being in the mix of things which is why you have probably been asked if your brewhouse space is available for rent for a private event.

The answer can be mixed. Having a private event space on site can be the best deflection as many breweries plan to have that area as a part of opening.

“People love to be in the actual brewery,” said Topa Topa owner Jack Dyer. “Obviously hosting folks there takes additional efforts and presents some risks.

“We have plans to create additional space adjacent to our production area but currently just provide brewery tours when requested as part of our events package. You can see directly into the cellar from our indoor private event space, which customers seem to enjoy.”

Wrightsville Beach Brewery actually tried to use its brewing space for groups under 20 for the first year it was opened, said owner Jud Watkins.

“Even with barricades and ropes, people would try to wander around the brewery so we shut it down,” he said. “I strongly advise against this.”

Now that O’so Brewing has a large event rental space, owner Marc Buttera said they don’t use that area anymore, but we do host private events like comedy shows in our barrel farm in the back storage portion of the brewery.

Dust Bowl made a decision at the outset that the brewery’s brewhouse footprint would never be used for events.

“We are very particular about our production area and didn’t think it was a good place for the public to be socializing,” Michelle Peterson advised.

Increased revenue and traffic are positives to using the additional space, especially if your taproom is small and can’t accommodate such requests, but Buttera said there are drawbacks.

“It seems we are always moving seating and preparing the space for the next event,” he said​, especially during peak months​ where​ it becomes more difficult to access the brewery area due to staging for brews and canning runs​.​

Urban Artifact often gets requests for tours or photos in the brewery, which is a very separate space from its events venue, and Scott Hand told Brewer they usually decline those requests.

“The brewery is an industrial production space, and while it’s clean, it’s not particularly photogenic or conducive to visitors,” he noted. “But we’ve also continually grown the production year over year and it always feels cramped in the brewhouse.

“We’ve always had this separation because of our unique facilities, so we’re not planning on using the production space for event operations in any way moving forward.”

Photo courtesy Karben4 Brewing

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