The Well Brewery Coming to Downtown Pensacola in 2020 Under East Garden District Project
A new brewery experimenting with an old style will become the first business to open under the umbrella of the privately developed East Garden District project in downtown Pensacola.
Owner DC Reeves and the front men at Perfect Plain Brewing Co. plan to open The Well in the fall of 2020 at 42 E. Garden St. The team's new venture will be an expansion of sorts, opening directly next door to — and even sharing a wall and storage space with — Perfect Plain.
"It'll be a true wood-cellar program," Reeves said of The Well's brewing style. "We'll have some beers that will be in barrels or foeders for a year, or maybe more." The venture will bring a mixed-culture, wood-cellar beer program to Pensacola, imparting new flavors to craft beer and cocktails through a barrel-brewed and barrel-aged process.
Interior design calls for a 2,000-square-foot taproom and bar area. Reeves said there will be a small kitchen to make small plates and tapas-style dishes for Well customers. Perfect Plain will continue to benefit from its food truck partnerships.
"We like to feel like with everything we do we're pushing the envelope and do new things that our community maybe hasn't seen before," Reeves said. "So we want to do that with The Well project and make a big investment in a wood-cellar program."
The Well will be anchored by Reed Odeneal, the director of brewing operations, and Nate Simmons, the cocktail manager. Odeneal said patrons of the new brewery will get a distinguished taste from every drink, courtesy of the the wood-cellar program.
What we're going to be able to do with The Well that we're not able to do now is we're going to be adding another ingredient, and that ingredient is time," Odeneal said. "In a wood-cellar program, through large formats, oak fermentation and barrel aging, we're able to apply this other dimension to how beers and these liquids are being created."
The East Garden District project plans to usher in a "place-making" hotel, shops, restaurants and residential units in the block along Jefferson Street between Garden and Chase streets.
Reeves leased The Well building from Chad Henderson, the private developer leading the East Garden District project who aims to take a formerly overlooked pocket of downtown and transform it into the city's next vibrant destination hub.
Henderson said Thursday that The Well is the perfect way for the estimated $50 million redevelopment project to plant its flag around this time next year.
"We were certainly excited to work with DC as we wanted to build around the momentum of Perfect Plain," said Henderson, the founder and CEO of Catalyst HRE. "We're excited about (The Well) and how it's a new concept to this area. We think it aligns very well with our vision of the overall district, and to bring something new to the community and to anchor it right here in the heart of East Garden District is something we're very excited about."
Henderson said that tracking closely behind the Well's opening target of the fall of 2020 is a new destination restaurant that will replace the former, which will be next door to The Well at 36 E. Garden St.