by David Chapman
Workspace: Bold City Brewery
In a beer market dominated by household names, Bold City Brewery is gaining a foothold in bars and establishments across Northeast Florida with some signature brews.
“We have fun doing it all,” said Susan Miller, Bold City owner and CEO, “and we work pretty hard to do it.”
Miller and her son, Brian, co-owner and head brewer, founded the small brewery business in 2008 after stepping away from information technology positions in the health-care industry. Leaving the lucrative job was tough, she said, but it’s been worth it.
“People thought I was crazy,” she said. “But they didn’t really tell me they thought that until after we starting succeeding.”
The company and product have developed a loyal following and many of their eight (sometimes nine, depending on the season) signature beers can be found at more than 100 establishments throughout Northeast Florida.
While the market isn’t tapped out by far, the brewery’s reach in the short term is capped. That will change within the next couple months, said Susan Miller, when the business receives and installs its new system that will allow for more and easier production. The goal is to have it installed in August.
The only people really affected by the “beer crisis” will be fans of certain varieties who fill their Bold City growlers, which are one gallon take-home jugs available for refill and exchange. Miller said the business sells 150 to 200 of the emblazoned carriers a week. The most popular variety is Duke’s Brown Ale.
This week marks American Craft Beer Week and Bold City will be featuring its own flavors along with other signature brands from across the state in its taproom this weekend.
Patrons can sign a giant “Declaration of Beer Independence” to mark the occasion.
The tavern is open weekends and is part of the warehouse, where the beer is made and prepared for distribution.
“It really depends on the weekend, but we get a pretty steady amount of business here,” said Miller of the tavern. “Some weekends are crazier than others.”
Bold City Brewery is at 2670 Rosselle Street. For more information, call 379-6551 or visit www.boldcitybrewery.com.