3 Stars Brewing Company is upgrading its tasting room to be more than just a bar in the corner of a warehouse. The Takoma brewery will enclose about 1,100 square feet within its facility to become the "Urban Farmhouse," a space for people to have a pint or host events.
One major highlight of the tasting room: air conditioning. The brewery currently doesn't have it. "In the summertime when you get a couple hundred people in here, it gets pretty warm," says co-owner Dave Coleman. "It gives people an opportunity to be inside the brewery seeing what's going on yet not having to experience the temperatures of being inside the brewery."
Coleman adds that there's a large demand for event spaces. The brewery is even hosting its first wedding in November. When it's not rented out, people can enjoy the eight beers on tap from high tops and bar stools. The tasting room will have a large garage door and windows that look out onto the fermenters and production. A satellite growler station will also be available outside the tasting room so the wait for pints doesn't get held up too long.
3 Stars is working with design firm Studio3877 to build out the space, which should fit as many as 100 people. Architect David Shove-Brown says he wanted to maintain a "cool sort of industrial feel" with reclaimed wood and corrugated metal. "It was really creating this barn or this farmhouse within the brewery," Shove-Brown says. The addition also adds some structure to this space: "It's not sort of this free-for-all in terms of where the hell do you go to line up and get a drink."
When it opens by the end of October, the tasting room will be open six or seven days a week as opposed to its current schedule of Thursdays through Sundays.
None of this would have been possible just a few years ago. When 3 Stars first opened in 2012, they couldn't even sell pints on premise. But changes to D.C. legislation have allowed breweries to build more traditional bars. Even more recent updates to local regulations allow breweries to apply for outdoor seating permits, just like restaurants and bars. 3 Stars plans to take advantage of that soon.
And 3 Stars isn't the only brewery looking to make improvements to on-site drinking. Shove-Brown says he's working with Atlas Brew Works to build a new tasting room there next.
3 Stars Brewing Company, 6400 Chillum Place NW; (202) 670-0333; 3starsbrewing.com
Renderings courtesy Studio3877