Somerville Brewing to Unveil Beer Garden at Assembly Row [Updated]

Expect a hyper local food menu, wines on draft, and, of course, plenty of Slumbrew beer.


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Updated, November 18: Slumbrew’s American Fresh Brewhouse will open tomorrow, November 19 at 4 p.m., according to co-owner Caitlin Jewell. Originally slated to open in early August, the outdoor space has been repeatedly delayed by construction problems on the four refurbished shipping containers that make up the Assembly Row beer garden. Due to the delay, Slumbrew will keep the space open through the winter. To fight the elements, Slumbrew has covered the space with a heated tent that maintains a consistent 70-degree temperature, according to Jewell.

American Fresh Brewhouse is located at 301 Canal Street, across from Saks Off 5th. For their opening on Wednesday they’ll be open from 4-11 p.m. This Thursday through Saturday, the taproom will be open from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. After this week they’ll maintain a regular schedule of 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.


Previously: The Somerville Brewing Company, who just recently broke ground on their first brick and mortar brewery and taproom in the Boynton Yards area of Somerville, has announced another major addition to its brand: a 60-seat, open-air beer garden to be located in the blossoming Assembly Row development. Currently scheduled to open on July 30, the new restaurant and bar will pair eight rotating Slumbrew draft beers with fresh local food, sandwiches, and charcuterie. Operating under the name American Fresh Taproom, the outdoor beer garden will be constructed from a collection of shipping containers that have been converted into retail and food prep spaces.

“The entire pavilion is being built out of these groovy recycled cargo containers, like those seen at pop-up restaurants in California and Texas,” says Somerville Brewing cofounder Caitlin Jewell. “Our concept is very Somerville, with New England products and ingredients most of which are from the Somerville area. Even the stuff that comes from outside of New England will showcase some of the best products that America has to offer. We want this to encapsulate what’s happening in the craft artisanal movement.”

The quick service menu, created by Matt Perez, formerly of Centro in Lowell, will feature snacks, soups, and sandwiches made with local products like Fiore Di Nonno and Great Hill Creamery cheeses, When Pigs Fly Bakery breads, Taza chocolate, and Grillo’s Pickles. Desserts includes various pies and that great Somerville tradition, a Fluffernutter made with almond butter. Beer alternatives will include sodas from Tower Root Beer and Spindrift, tap wines from Charles Bieler’s Gotham Project, and cold brew coffee on draft. All of the food will be served on compostable wood dinnerware from Verterra.

Jewell and fellow co-owner, Jeff Leiter, have signed a two-year lease agreement with Federal Realty at Assembly Row. In its first year, American Fresh Taproom will remain open until the end of October, with tentative plans to relaunch in early March. For the fall months, American Fresh Taproom will have a heated tent and an autumnal menu with more “robust items.”

Presently, a ticketed soft opening is planned for July 30 and July 31, with general admission available starting on Friday, August 1. Operating hours are expected to be 11a.m.-10p.m. Monday through Saturday and noon-8p.m. on Sundays.

“There’s not enough places to sit outside and drink great beer in Boston,” Jewell says. “I grew up at Cambridge Brewing Company, but it’ll be nice to give people some other options.”

American Fresh Menu

301 Canal St., Somerville;