The Risk/Reward of Adding This Component to Your Brewery

When Third Space first opened, co-founder Andy Gehl said they had a mantra: We’re not restaurateurs, we don’t want to be a restaurant.

“We want you to judge us by our beer,” he told Brewer during their cover story interview for the January/February issue this year. “If the french fries are cold, we don’t want to give us a one-star review on Yelp, even though you had the best Pale Ale you’ve ever had, or whatever.”

But, pointed out fellow co-founder Kevin Wright, the Milwaukee-based brewery is in the hospitality business.

“Part of hospitality is giving people space and part of that is food,” he said.

The “Third Space Innovation Brewhouse” was announced in December of 2023 and it will join a new development that includes 173 apartment units and additional retail and restaurant spaces. The building will house a 10-barrel innovation brewery and a kitchen for food service.

READ MORE: These 2 Hops Get Third Space Excited for Beer’s Future

With more than 40 local competitors and brewery choices now since the brewery opened in late 2016, consumers can have their pick of what is available and the Third Space team wants to give them another reason to come to this new brewery location in Menomonee Falls.

“(They need) a reason to stick around and have that full experience,” Gehl said in early 2023 when discussing how to plan for the future. At the time, the brewery was looking into creating its own food truck for on-site use.

“If we ever did a second location, there’s certainly some kind of food competent to it, it’s a necessity,” he said.

It can be hard to get a food truck to come to the original location and have them stay once there.

“I think we also had a bit of a naive vision of what the food truck scene was really like,” he admitted.

“It’s inconsistent, and it’s challenging,” Gehl said. “(Food is) an important piece and the other part of it is how competitive the marketplace has gotten. There are so many choices, consumers have not just on the shelves, but in taprooms to visit.”

The approximately 5,000 square foot space will include a 112-seat indoor taproom and a large covered outdoor patio, along with outdoor common areas with fire pits and other elements.

Photo courtesy Third Space Brewing

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