PHOENIX - State 48 Brewery is expanding and bringing its beer to downtown Phoenix.
In a Facebook post on Thursday, the brewery said, "The City of Surprise has been so supportive of us that we need more brewing capacity."
The brewery will occupy nearly 10,000-square-feet of space within the historic Welnic Building near 4th Avenue and Van Buren Street. They will be the first tenants of the recently-revitalized building, said Mario Rana, owner of State 48 Brewery.
"It's going to be a perfect spot for the next brewery," said Rana. "We want everything to feel like going out to the brewery is a whole experience. It's not just trying out different flights; we want it to be a good experience."
Rana said the building itself has a lot of special character, from the exposed wooden trusses, to the windows and flooring.
"It's going to be perfect for us," he said.
The brewery will have large open garage doors that connect the outdoor patio to the indoor dining room and brewery, as well as a mezzanine and a catwalk that overlooks the brewery.
Rana hopes to open in early 2018.
FILLING A VOID
When State 48 Brewing opened in June 2016 in Surprise, it was bringing an element to the community that it did not have before, said Rana.
From the beginning, the family-run business was focused on showcasing local Arizona craft brews, as well as breweries in nearby states.
In October, they began brewing and tapping their own beers. They have 10 homebrews now.
During Spring Training, they were asked to sell some of their beers at Surprise Stadium.
"Between concessions and our restaurant, we were struggling to keep up with capacity," said Rana of State 48's 10-barrel brew house in Surprise.
He began looking for a second location, but knew he wanted something historic. That took him to downtown Phoenix.
The downtown Phoenix location will be able to produce twice as much beer as the company's Surprise location.
"In Surprise, we brought something the community really wanted and they have accepted us with open arms. We feel this is something downtown Phoenix wants and we're hoping for the same results," said Rana.
The Welnic Building is located across the street from The Van Buren, a new entertainment space from Charlie Levy, owner of Stateside Presents and Crescent Ballroom.
While admittedly a still up-and-coming part of downtown, Rana said there is growth happening, and noted Levy's project.
"We feel like maybe we'll help start the resurgence of the entertainment district of downtown Phoenix," he said.
While we wait for construction to start downtown, State 48's brewery in Surprise is located at Bell Road and Litchfield Park.