After 25 years in its flagship building on its namesake street, Second Street Brewery has announced it will close its original location.
“We had a 20-year lease on the building at the original location, and it expires at the end of June,” founder Rod Tweet tells SFR. “That means no lease exits and we had to negotiate a new one, and we’ve been unable to negotiate a new one I’m comfortable signing.”
Tweet says he believes the majority of employees currently working at the location will be absorbed by the company’s other two restaurants on Rufina Street and in the Railyard. As for the brewing operation, which produces many of the company’s more varietal beers, Tweet says a new location is in the works.
“I’m pretty close to having a good spot for that,” Tweet notes.
The announcement comes at a time during which the very shape of the restaurant industry is in constant flux. The COVID-19 pandemic brought ramifications that are still playing out, and though Tweet describes the upcoming loss as “agonizing,” the decision ultimately came down to doing what’s best to keep Second Street viable.
”We’re 100% solid as a company—financially and everything else—but over the last couple years we’ve focused on packaging and we’re having a lot of success with that, that’s growing, so it just came down to, should we just keep showing up and doing all the same things as before the pandemic, or should we shift our focus a little bit,” Tweet explains. “We made a conscious decision to shift our focus. The brand grew beyond one physical location, and the brand is the brand, is our belief.”
Second Street’s final day of operations in its original location is Saturday, April 9, and Tweet tells SFR it “will not be a regular weekend.” He’s not ready to make announcements yet, but says “we’re figuring out some customer appreciation kind of activities.”
But what about the business name if the brewery will no longer live on Second Street?
“I believe we’ll continue to use the name,” Tweet says with a laugh.