Every neighborhood deserves its own growler station, and Bluffview area, your time is here. Bluffview Growler will open on Northwest Highway at Marsh Lane, from the folks behind Lakewood Growler.
Bluffview Growler, which will reside on the ground floor of the Elan at Bluffview Apartments, will share the same setup as its big brother in Lakewood, but with a little something extra: a kitchen that serves bites and snacks.
Owner Dale Czech likes the location because there is so little in the area in the way of craft beer.
"We first looked at that spot a couple of years ago and were initially hesitant, because the location requires that 25 percent of your sales be non-alcohol," he says. "We don't have that requirement at Lakewood Growler, where our customers are free to bring in their own food. But finding real estate wasn't easy, and we felt like we could bring something new to the neighborhood."
The rule about deriving at least 25 percent in non-beer sales is due to the mixed-use building, which has apartments above and retail below. But the area is in transition. Jimmy John's just opened a branch in the same building, and a Chick Fil-A opened in the center as well. "I know they do their homework," Czech says.
Growler concepts are among the most complicated to open. You need a license that accommodates both to-go orders as well as consuming beer on-site. But that flexibility is what makes them so practical for customers.
Lakewood Growler is one of the best growler bars, thanks to its well-selected collection of craft beers, which range from top local brews to rare and boutique beers from around the country. Their tap listing is extremely user-friendly, because it reflects real-time supplies. You can see not only what they have on tap but how empty or full the keg is.
The Bluffview branch is under construction and isn't expected to open until late fall, so the menu is still in development. "But we know we're going to have small bites," he says.
They'll have about the same number of taps as Lakewood, keeping it to under 50 total, with about eight dedicated to wines and sodas. They'll have more room for customers to sit, with plans to install the magical "p" word, patio.
"The space is about 30 percent bigger than what we have in Lakewood," he says. "And we plan to open a patio in the spring, and that's for dog owners. At Lakewood, we can allow dogs because there's no restaurant, but having a kitchen means you can't allow dogs to come in. We want to stay dog-friendly."