Everybody was sad to see Droege’s closing down, and we all miss a grocery store we can walk to. However, everything happens for a reason. The good news is that the building will be home of John G.’s Tap Room – a place to meet friends, drink beer, and watch how it’s being brewed. Who is behind this ambitious project? Jeri and Terry Heisler, the owners of Augusta Brewing Co. and John G.’s Bier Deck.
Jeri’s great-great grandfather John G. Droege opened Droege’s Supermarket it in the late 1800s, and her father, John D. “Butch” Droege, was its last owner. The building is still in the family, but it is now being remodeled to John G.’s Tap Room. The outside hasn’t changed so much yet, but wait until you see the inside.
When I walked in, the guys were in the middle of making a huge hole in the floor. This is where the large brewing tanks will go. They will be surrounded by a bar, so customers can enjoy the delicious brew while watching how it’s being made.
Terry was downstairs, pushing the floor boards. The renovation has been going on for a couple of months and the new brewery is expected to open on June 20th.
Butch stopped by to check on the progress, and Terry came upstairs. The remodeling of the 19th century building involves a lot of hard work, but everything seems to be going according to plan.
The project’s initial phase will be a restaurant and bar with seating for about 120 people. The tap room will feature a full kitchen and Augusta’s draft beers, as well as other beers, local wine, mixed drinks and soft drinks.
Can you believe that the space between the column and the wall used to be an alley way? The original brick wall adds a nice touch to John G.’s Tap Room.
This will be the banquet room, which already has two bookings. It will hold around 150 people – great for any kind of celebrations.
I quite like the French doors. Gives it a classy look.
One of the two fully equipped kitchens is almost ready to be put to use.
The lady’s room also boasts with some original exposed brick walls.
The whole brewery operation will be performed downstairs. Augusta currently brews its beers from a warehouse in Labadie, but when they move to the new location the production will be increased by 300% to satisfy the high demand for hand-crafted beer.
Droege’s catering will keep operating from the basement of the building. They have been there for 50 years, and they will be catering many of the events in the new brewery.
John G.’s Bier Deck is a stone’s throw away from the brewery, which means that the beer won’t have to travel far. Augusta Brewing Co. distributes their craft beer around 7 counties in the area, and the demand for their brew keeps increasing. The new facility is greatly needed and the convenience factor is very important.
In less then a month you will be able to taste Agusta’s award-winning Hyde Park Stout and other draft offerings at the new John G.’s Tap Room. Brewery tours will also be offered on the weekend. Next time you have friends out-of-state over, you’ll be able to take them to our own Washington brewery. They will think we are cool. But we already know that 😉