A new brewery has filed to open its doors on the Parkway, with the owners saying they would like to be permitted and open by March.
BearMoose Brewing is looking to occupy the rear portion of 1934 Parkway, a building that currently houses a psychic and a used car lot. It would be one of the first breweries outside of the Santilli area and on a main road in Everett.
“We knew a lot about Everett because of the breweries that are already here and we loved the idea that Everett was very friendly to breweries,” said Jeff Wetzel, a co-founder of the venture. “We know Everett has a great reputation for helping breweries along, but truthfully I never thought we would be able to afford anything in Everett. By chance, we came across this place and it was in our budget and had all the characteristics we wanted – exposed structures and wood beams. We always said it would be great to be in Everett. We found this place and started talking with the City and everything was positive. With all the other development going on and things going in, we just wanted to be a part of that whole scene.”
City officials confirmed that BearMoose had filed with the Planning Board last week for a review to change the use of the space. They plan to renovate 5,500 sq. ft. for manufacturing beer and also to have a tap/tasting room. The Planning Board will hold a public hearing on Nov. 13.
City Planner Tony Sousa said it was a very interesting proposition for the Parkway, and was the first time such a plan has been floated for that new district – which just recently had new zoning approved to promote residential and commercial uses over industrial uses.
“They have just started out and they have a similar story to the other three we have in Everett,” said Sousa. “What’s exciting is this is a brewery being sited on Rt. 16 and has a lot of potential to provide more activation there…That’s exactly what we wanted to do on the Parkway.”
Wetzel, who founded the brewery with his business partner, Andrew Gilman, said they will be a small brewery. He said they have just invested in a 10 barrel brewing system that they would install in the new property. They plan to have a tap room that would host 120 people. They would not be distributing their product, but would rely for now only on sales at the tap room.
Gilman, a business manager, has been home brewing for 19 years, while Wetzel, an architect, has been at it for six years. They said they would hope their brewery is known for having a steady core selection of beers, and also has a good amount experimentation.
“We’re going to stay pretty small,” he said. “We’re not planning on doing an distribution now. It would all be taproom sales. We would have a core offering of a number of styles. And because we are small, it allows us to be able to do a lot of experimentation all the time. We hope to have a little bit of something for everyone.”
Already, he said, they have turned to some of the existing Everett breweries, including Bone Up. That brewery has helped them with the ins and outs of getting things started.
Both said they have no experience running a brewery on a larger scale than at home, but have been thinking about it a long time. After looking at the numbers recently, they were able to fit it all together, he said.
“We decided to go for it,” said Wetzel.