USA, MI: Dirty Thumb Brewing Company to open in Port Huron after getting state and federal approval
Where once there were movie screens and dry-cleaning equipment in Port Huron will soon be home to something a little more bubbly, the Port Huron Times Herald reported on February 23.
Jeramie Albert plans to open Dirty Thumb Brewing Company, which will produce beer, wine and liquor, at the former Pine Grove Cleaners at 1615 Pine Grove Ave.
Albert, who works for the city's wastewater treatment plant, has brewed beer on and off for about 13 years and opening a brewery has been a pipe dream for quite a while.
Still young enough to take a risk I guess, Albert said.
According to St. Clair County property records, the building was purchased in June 2019 for $50,000 from Northstar Bank.
Albert said he probably looked at dozens of buildings but chose the Pine Grove Avenue location because he got a good deal on it and its a high traffic area.
Hes currently working to transform the space with family and friends, with one family member coming up with the name. The business is in the Thumb of Michigan and theyre getting their hands dirty to offer the working persons beer, Albert said.
It just kind of stuck, he said.
Albert received local approval for the tasting room in early February and his next steps include getting state and federal approval. As soon as he bought the building he started working on it, taking out the dry-cleaning equipment.
Albert said there used to be all sorts of piping, carpeted floors, and clothes were still in the building from the 1970s to 1990s.
Working on the space now, he is remodeling parts while paying homage to the past occupants of the space.
Such as the "Fur Coat Vault." The vault was put in when the dry cleaners took over and they stored furs and leathers in the secure climate-controlled room.
That room is going to be repurposed into the brew room, Albert said.
There is also an old conveyor clothes rack that goes around the top of the ceiling. It is going to be repurposed into a mug club conveyor rack. People can buy a mug for life and it will be stored on the conveyor above. When someone wants their mug, they can watch it come around as an employee retrieves it, he said.
The carpeted floor is gone, replaced with hardwood floors, and a cherry wood bar has been installed. One side of the building will be torn down to provide more parking spaces, with 15 total once development is completed.
There is going to be a space above tables for entertainment, similar to the balcony in the Raven Café, and there will be booth seating similar to the Brass Rail along the walls, Albert said.
Kind of give it that older feel, older vibe, he said.
Albert plans to offer beer and wine when he opens and at some point liquor, all brewed and distilled by him. He would like to have 20 to 30 beer taps and more.
He still has to finish the framing for the building and the electrical and plumbing. The goal is to open by the end of 2021, he said.
There was no room to put a kitchen, so Albert would like to work with food trucks to serve nearby, depending how busy the business gets.
Such as Gary Lokers, owner of Eli's Eats In The Streets, who went to high school with Albert and plans to serve food near the brewery.
Ive known him forever, hes a really good guy, Lokers said.
He said Albert has big plans for the space and it will be good for other local businesses.