Wednesday, November 27, 2013
Deep Ellum’s only brewpub, BrainDead Brewing, will open in mid-2014
The bar is the effort of local beer experts Sam Wynne, Jeff Fryman and Drew Huerter.
DEEP ELLUM North Texas is currently home to more than 15 breweries. But the number of brewpubs – restaurants that brew beer and serve food – are half that.
Three local beer experts noticed this imbalance in the local craft scene and recently announced plans to add another brewpub to Dallas’ roster, the only of its kind in Deep Ellum.
Sam Wynne, director of beer programs of Flying Saucer and Meddlesome Moth, confirmed Monday he, along with partner Jeff Fryman and head brewer Drew Huerter, will open BrainDead Brewing next to Lula B’s antique shop on Main Street in Deep Ellum. They expect to open in mid-2014.
Fryman was formerly manager at The Common Table, a well-known craft beer bar in Uptown, and Huerter was head brewer at Deep Ellum Brewing Co. Both Wynne and Fryman are certified cicerones, and the trio has strong ties to Deep Ellum.
“I was born at Baylor Hospital, right down the road,” said Wynne by phone. “We felt like an investment into Deep Ellum was an investment to the city as a whole.”
When BrainDead Brewing opens in its more than 5,000-square-foot space, it will house 30 to 40 taps.
“We have a great craft scene and are looking forward to supporting all our friends in the business,” he said. However, “we will feature breweries from everywhere and spread the love.”
Part of the plan is to create exclusive collaboration beers in BrainDead’s 10- to 15-barrel brew house. Eventually, a third of the restaurant’s taps will be original recipes, crafted by Huerter. There are no immediate plans to serve bottled or canned beers, or to distribute brew made in house for retail, he added. Beyond that, neither Wynne nor Huerter eluded to the type of beers you’ll be able to find there.
“Use your imagination and look at who’s involved and you can get an idea of what’s possible,” Huerter said.
As far as food, BrainDead will have a slim menu that both accommodates your wallet and showcases "culinary prowess," Wynne said. No word yet on who will be heading the kitchen, though it's worth mentioning Wynne owns Rodeo Goat in Fort Worth, which arguably has one of the best burgers in town.
As part of this endeavor, Wynne said he will be relinquishing his position with 8.0 Management and thus involvement with the Flying Saucer group. Wynne admits it will be strange switching from retail to production, but he is most excited to experiment with beer on a small scale and push creative boundaries.
Huerter believes his transition from large-scale production to small will be “more workable” and provide the unique opportunity to educate drinkers about craft culture.
“It’s direct engagement with beer drinkers,” said Huerter. “It’s really what North Texas is going to need to advance where the craft beer culture is right now. That experience can be so meaningful and so influential.”
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