How to explain everything that’s going on at Hyde Brewing’s new facility at 2911 Griffith St.?
“We’re not just a brewery,” says Dan Hyde (the owner, with partners).
No, they definitely are not: When it opens Monday (the grand opening is next month), the building will contain Suffolk Punch, a local-ingredient restaurant with a 48-tap bar, the brewery with six 30-barrel and two 15-barrel fermenters, Lindsay Pittman’s Hyde Coffee, an outdoor area with another 16 beer taps, an entrance on to the Lynx light rail line (it’s just a few steps from the New Bern station), and an upstairs lab for all the chemistry that goes into making beer.
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That is a soft opening, though: Hyde beers aren’t ready for a few more weeks. Breakfast will be pastries at first, but the restaurant will have full dinner service, including cocktails and beers. After the official grand opening Aug. 26, they’ll add hot breakfast, weekend brunch and lunch.
That’s just the beginning, though: Hyde and his partners, including Collins Rick of the Durban Group, also have bought the buildings on either side, at 2905 and 2915 Griffith, so they’ll eventually expand beyond the original 8,000 square feet into a total of 25,000 square feet. The other buildings will eventually house Pittman’s coffee roasterery, a sour-beer facility, an area for barrel-aging beers and an event space.
Also being considered for 2018: A speciality market and bottle shop.
“In South End, every square foot is becoming more valuable,” Ricks says. They haven’t planned out how they’ll use all the space, but are going to allow it to grow as people respond to it.
In the meantime, Hyde and his crew, including chemist/brewer Allison Carr and brewer Daniel McIlmoyle, who attended a brewing program in Germany, are hurrying to use all the brewing space available to them.
When it opens Monday, the taps won’t be filled with Hyde beer. It’s still in the process, so they will open with a lot of national, state and local craft beers. But the tanks are currently filled with a Munich Helles summer beer, a pale ale, IPA and pilsner, with a New England-style IPA on the way.
Meanwhile, the restaurant Suffolk Punch, with chef Robert Corley, will be in the $5 to $25 range, including a $12 house burger. Suffolk Punch, by the way, is named after a work horse that was used to work the barley fields in Suffolk County in England, where Hyde was born before coming to America with his family when he was 6.
From an early version of the menu:
House Pickles $5
Local Mushrooms $8
Farmed Cucumbers $5
Foie Gras Popcorn $6
Smoked Heirloom Tomato $7
Grilled Bacon $10
Citrus Marinated Beets $8
Lamb Tartar $10
Suffolk Punch Burger $12
Roasted Chicken $16
Grilled Hanger Steak $25
Grilled Shishito Peppers $5
Potato Croquettes $6
Gruyere, tomato, pepper Pomodoro
Hyde didn’t expect to have all of this when he retired from a career as a nuclear engineer with Duke Energy. The restaurant component, Suffolk Punch, “scared me to death,” he says. “I have no background in restaurants.” Dan Davis of Craft Tasting Room joined the project to help with the food component.
But Dan Hyde’s interest in fermenting led to interest in flavors, and that led to food and coffee. At heart, Hyde is interested in creativity and seeing what people can create when they have a place to do it. A lot of the space includes creative touches, from the little herb beds built into the outdoor tables to the outdoor bar with big “H’s” made from iron bars.
“We’re trying to blend all the skills of everyone on the team,” Hyde says.