BELLEVUE, Ky. -- Darkness Brewing, which will focus on dark beer styles, will start slinging its own beer at its grand opening July 23.
Darkness has been serving some guest beers for the past couple weekends, but it all has been simply a soft opening leading up to the anticipated big day. The grand opening celebration, scheduled 2-11 p.m., will feature Texas Joe’s taco truck and live acoustic music.
Darkness met its crowdfunding goal of $25,000 last summer, with 119 different backers. Although construction problems have delayed the opening several months, Darkness Brewing co-founders Eric Bosler and Ron Sanders have been all smiles while pouring guest taps and answering questions during the trial run.
“We got through successfully, and here we are,” said Sanders.
Once Darkness beers are on tap, the brewery will begin selling growlers, as well.
Darkness is brewing on a 3.5 barrel system to start. That’s a good-sized system for a nanobrewery, especially one with no plans to distribute beer.
“After the event, we will probably expand hours and start growing as necessary,” Sanders said. “The goal is to be open seven days a week.”
The initial beers on tap will be: Man on the Moo, a milk stout; Hop Head Nebula, an India Black Ale; Galaxy Anomaly, a black session ale; Bellevue Common, a Kentucky Common Ale; and Christothor the Blonde, a blonde ale.
Some patrons might be surprised to find a blonde ale on the menu at a place named Darkness, but Sanders and Bosler are fans of all beer, not just the dark styles.
“We’re called Darkness because there’s a special place in our hearts for dark beers, but the plan is to have one light beer on tap at all times,” said Sanders. “We plan to always have a really light beer and a really dark beer, then a mix of everything in between.”
While the taps will rotate among beers and styles, one staple style at Darkness will be a tap dedicated to ciders.
“We want everybody to have something they like, and not everybody likes beer,” Bosler said.
Another way Darkness is trying to appeal to everyone is with its seating. It has high-top tables, lower tables, two booths, a futon and a bar made out of wood reclaimed from a Bellevue home built in the 1860s.
“Artifact [art gallery] helped us with the bar,” Sanders said. “They collected these pieces of wood and crafted them into a bar top for us, and that’s been a fan favorite so far.”
One of the high-top tables is a reclaimed typesetting table, and it looks like it has been well used.
“When we reclaimed it, we left all the ink and colors on it, and it looks really neat,” Sanders said.
Newport-based gallery Artifact will be featured prominently in the first month Darkness is open. There is a hallway with space to show art, and the gallery will be the first to have its works shown at the brewery.
“We have a lot of friends who are artists, and we wanted to give them a chance to show off their work,” Sanders said. “Because Artifact helped us out, they get first dibs. We’re trying to be creative and fun with it.”
224 Fairfield Ave., Bellevue