Wormtown Set to Open New Brewery and Taproom
Like Bissell Brothers’ The Substance in Maine, or Fiddlehead’s Mastermind to beer nerds around Vermont, Wormtown’s Be Hoppy IPA has proven to be one of the most elusive canned beer offerings in Massachusetts. But that could all change when the Worcester brewery opens its new 10,000 square foot facility to the public in mid-March—a development that will include new labels, a new logo, and much, much more beer.
Located inside the 1920s-era Worcester Buick Co. building at 72 Shrewsbury St.—which also houses Volturno Pizza, Sweet bakery, and Worcester Magazine—the new brewery will have the capacity to quadruple their current production. Two weeks ago, founder Ben Roesch and his team, including new head brewer Megan Parisi, started brewing commercially for the first time inside the space. Those two 30 barrel batches of Be Hoppy and Seven Hills pale ale, set to hit the market early next week, are just a taste of their eventual 10,400 bbl annual production.
“Part of the commitment of filling out a facility of this size included purchasing a high efficiency Italian bottling line,” says managing partner, David Fields. “So sometime in late spring, you’ll see 16oz. cans of Be Hoppy and a full six-pack lineup that includes 12oz. bottles of Be Hoppy, our seasonal beers like Blonde Cougar [summer ale], and Bottle Rocket pale ale, which is a new offering from us.”
In addition to those packaging developments, Fields says Wormtown will be bottling their bigger, higher octane beers, such as Hopulence double IPA in four-packs. Dubbed their “Underground” line—another nod to the late ’70s Worcester underground punk scene after which they’re named—the exclusive series will also include the brewery’s Pro-Am Porter and Sweet Tats Stout.
Besides the increased production, another big benefit to Wormtown’s new space is the 1,000 square foot taproom, which will have retail space for merchandise and pre-bottled offerings, as well as a bar with 10 draft lines for pint and growler fills. At the bar, Wormtown will have a minimum of eight different beers rotating through at all time, with multiple handles dedicated to more popular selections like Be Hoppy.
“It’s a little different than where we came from because we didn’t have a taproom before.” Fields says. “It came out really nice with an industrial feel that includes 12-inch-deep chair rails that wrap around the room for people to hang out and lean on. There’s also an enormous glass wall behind the bar overlooking the brewery.”
Fields says the goal is to have a soft opening of their taproom on March 13 and 14. Afterward, they’ll follow that with a big bash on the brewery’s fifth anniversary, March 17. Check their Facebook and Twitter accounts for updates.