Sam McNulty has the best kind of problem an owner can have; he's selling so much beer at Market Garden Brewery
in Ohio City that he can hardly keep up with demand. Selling kegs to patrons or restaurants that want to carry popular varieties like Pearl Street Wheat or CitroMax IPA is out of the question.
McNulty and his partners expect to solve their space crunch by early next year with the redevelopment of the Market Culinary Building, a 43,000-square-foot warehouse at W. 24th Street and Bridge Avenue. McNulty has taken to calling the place the "palace of fermentation."
After purchasing the building last year for $800,000, McNulty, brewmaster Andy Tveekram and partners Mike Foran and Mark Priemer will spend an undisclosed sum rehabbing it into a hub for beermaking, cheesemaking, charcuterie, distilling, kombucha and other types of fermentation. They'll offer classes and tours from beermaking to sausage making to butchering whole, pasture-raised animals.
"Bar Cento was the first restaurant in the state to serve farm-raised venison," explains McNulty. "We had a big coming-out party for venison. We had a whole deer sitting on the bartop, and Chef Lambert did a demonstration of how to break down a whole animal. That event sold out within two hours of listing tickets for sale."
"People are very interested in artisanal food, who’s making it," he adds. "They want to know it’s local, fresh, and the animals are raised, harvested humanely."
The building, which sits on an acre of land, will solve the beermaking problem and then some -- the large space offers room to grow. McNulty says the foursome also plans to open a retail shop sometime next year to sell homemade products.
"We'll sell charcuterie, cheese, fresh eggs," he says. "Everything we put out will be on a very boutique level. We'll pick out four to six recipes we've perfected at Market Garden and then make them to distribute to restaurants in the area."
The point is to complement the West Side Market, which McNulty wholeheartedly supports but feels needs to boost local products and update its hours. "At one point we considered buying a stand, but we didn't want to limit ourselves to the impractical hours the market keeps. We'll be open on days the market isn't."
Source: Sam McNulty
Writer: Lee Chilcote