After two years’ worth of preparation and several weeks of fermentation, Oswego Brewing Co. will open its doors to the public Friday with a grand opening.
The taproom, which sits below Oswego Cyclery, is located inside the old Oswego fire station at 61 Main St. Chris Heinen, founder and brewery operations manager, said he hopes the company’s presence in the community will complement the surrounding businesses and Oswego as a whole.
“This community and this downtown are up and coming,” Heinen said. “There’s no craft breweries within 10 miles of Oswego. I think we can be a pretty good fit down here.”
Six beers will be featured in the taproom Friday for the initial release, including a Station 1 IPA, Hay’z For Horsez New England IPA, Old Firehouse Cream Ale, Farmland Saison, The Fox & The Monkey Sour and Swine in the Streets Witbier.
“I don’t have a favorite style of beer. It’s usually the beer in my hand that
I like the best,” said Marc Wilson, head brewer at Oswego Brewing Co.
Wilson said he received his first homebrew kit from his daughter as a Father’s Day present 10 years ago when he worked as a science teacher at West Chicago Middle School.
Like his partners who began their careers homebrewing, Wilson’s passion quickly turned into a full-time job and, eventually, a career.
Wilson worked as the head brewer at Nevin’s Brewing Co. in Plainfield last year and took home a gold medal for his Vienna Lager recipe during this year’s Olympic-sized World Beer Cup in Nashville, Tennessee.
“I just want to bring great beer to Oswego,” Wilson said. “I want people to count on that they’re going to get great stuff every time they come out.”
Several ingredients used in some of the beers have been locally sourced from businesses near the brewery, including spices from Pinch of Happiness and coffee beans from Village Grind.
The brewery won’t feature a kitchen or a food menu, but food trucks and nonalcoholic beverages will be staples.
The brewery recently collaborated with Romeoville-based Metal Monkey Brewing and hopes to collaborate with more local breweries in the near future.
“We’ll be here for quite a while,” Heinen said. “We have plans for expansion.”