Boca Raton Brewery Gets Unanimous Support From City Council
Left, brewer Dr. Bill McFee in front of the Boca Raton City Council.
Boca Raton will soon have its own production brewery, thanks to the passing Tuesday night of Resolution No. 23-2014, "A resolution of the City of Boca Raton considering conditional use approval to allow the operation of a beverage manufacturing use with an accessory tasting room within existing tenant space in the Penn-Florida Commerce Center, generally located at 1141 South Rogers Circle; providing for severability; providing for repealer; providing an effective date (CA-13-04)"
Beer fans in Boca can rejoice at the news, as this means that up-and-comer Barrel of Monks Microbrewery is on its way to operable status. You might have tasted some of its Belgian-styled beers at the Florida Brewers Guild Festival in Boynton Beach this past November.
Jim Bell, planning and zoning manager for the city, spoke at length on Resolution No. 23-2014, laying out the conditional use provisions and giving an overview of the new microbrewery. Here are some of the interesting tidbits discussed:
Barrel of Monks will be a 9,136-square-foot brewery, including an 867-square-foot tasting room. Most of the space will be taken up by brewing equipment and the necessary storage requirements to maintain production to one of the local distributors.
The attached tasting room is being slated to operate from 4 to 8 p.m. during the week and from 2 to 9 p.m. on weekends. This is partially due to conditions laid down from all parties involved that revolve around traffic and parking requirements.
After the resolution was presented, members of the public were invited to speak. Mitch Kirschner, attorney for the project, assuaged any fears that this microbrewery would become anything other than a craft beer destination.
"It will be great for Boca," he said. "They are a niche industry, growing tremendously... Its good that we're going to have one in Boca.
"This has been a labor of love for [the McFee's] for some time. This is not a bar... nothing like beer that gets chugged at Dolphins games and such... [This is] a very sophisticated industry for aficionados."
After a few minor questions for Bill McFee and some some attempts from City Council members at keeping things light, the resolution was passed unanimously, 5-0.
In an emailed response, McFee told us, "This should be the biggest hurdle we have to overcome. From here on it is stuff every brewery has to deal with: architects, buildout, licensing, etc. And then brewing!!"
You can watch the full proceedings on Resolution 23-2014 below.
Doug Fairall is a craft beer blogger who focuses on Florida beers and has been a homebrewer since 2010. For beer things in your Twitter feed, follow him @DougFairall and find the latest beer pics on Clean Plate's Instagram.