KENNETT SQUARE—The long-anticipated grand opening celebration at Braeloch Brewing, Kennett Square’s newest brewery took place last weekend. Brewmaster Kent Steeves, his wife Amy, and co-owners Matt and Kathy Drysdale look forward to welcoming everyone to Braeloch, “Kennett Square’s community family room.”
The two couples are longtime friends who dreamed, during long hours spent at their children’s swim meets, of creating a community gathering place where everyone would feel at home and where Kent could fulfill his passion for brewing craft beer. The grand opening of Braeloch is the realization of those dreams.
The name Braeloch, which was carved on a wooden sign on a lamppost at Kent’s family summer home in the Finger Lakes, reflects the vision of the four friends to offer a “third place,” which is neither work nor home, where people can gather, relax, and enjoy good beer and good company.
Kent has been brewing for over a decade, and he’s excited to offer a cross-section of beers, from traditional ales and IPAs to more experimental brews, on 12 taps from the ten-barrel on-site brewhouse.
On tap, for example, might be a saison, “a refreshing classic farmhouse or pale ale,” or 33rd Marc Cream Ale, which Kent describes as “a nice, light ale with a creamy mouthfeel, a little touch of hops, and a subtly sweet finish.” Braeloch’s Meddling Russian Imperial Malt, at 9.1 percent ABV, features “all the warm notes of dark beers, including coffee and a little bit of chocolate, without being heavy.” Kent also enjoys offering tours of the facility, as part of what he calls “curiosity-driven education.”
Braeloch’s 4,000-square-foot taproom features an undulating 78-foot bar perfect for conversation, as well as a mix of casual seating arrangements. The former trolley-repair shop, built in 1903, has been preserved and reimagined so that its story can be appreciated and remembered by new generations. Exposed brick and a rich, gold-painted back wall reminiscent of a pale ale, complete with bubbles, add warmth to the space, and enormous arched windows let in lots of natural light. As warmer weather arrives, guests will enjoy Braeloch’s tree-shaded and dog-friendly outdoor beer garden alongside Red Clay Creek. Braeloch Brewing joins its neighbors The Creamery in the redevelopment and transformation of Birch Street.