A small brewpub in Oak Cliff is closing. Called Small Brewpub, it's the bar-restaurant on Jefferson Boulevard perhaps best known as "the place where chef Misti Norris used to work." According to a Facebook post from the restaurant, it will close on December 7, which is also their 5th anniversary.
"Five years ago a group of friends here in Oak Cliff put together an ambitious plan to create a novel spin on the neighborhood brewpub concept," the post says. "They called it Small."
The post goes on to say that their lease is up and they've decided to not renew.
Small Brewpub was founded by brewer Aaron Garcia, Joshua Dawn, and Daniel Bowman, who brought together their passion for craft beer and live music; Garcia had been a hobby brewer and Bowman is a musician.
They were prototypical indie; for example, it wasn't until this past June that they finally installed a real sign on the building's exterior. And when CultureMap nominated their bartender "Benj" Pocta to its list of nominees for the 2016 Tastemaker Awards, he posted a screed on Facebook calling us exploitative. No hard feelings, though. We're cool. Totally over it.
They opened with Norris in the kitchen, providing her a platform to continue her culinary journey following her departure from Design District restaurant FT 33, and earning themselves a spot on Bon Appetit magazine's Best New 50 restaurants in 2015.
But in 2017, they decided they needed to switch from $20-$25 entrees down to $15-$17 entrees, and add more approachable items, IE a burger, and let Norris go.
Garcia's beers were well-regarded, with the pub's signature Black Pepper Pils drawing a fan club.
Bowman said in a message that he didn't want to be quoted in the press about the closure, while Garcia did not respond to an email.
In their remaining days, they'll be celebrating their beer prowess by serving anniversary beers from their past, including Mish Mish, from 2017, and Byzantium, from 2018.
On November 26, they'll tap their final, fifth anniversary release. Called Ultimo, it's an 11 percent ABV strong ale fermented with Norwegian kveik yeast which they describe as "brimming with stone fruit character, conditioned on Madagascar and Mexican vanilla beans as well as a touch of nutmeg." Sounds autumny.
They'll also host a big party on closing day.
"Those of you who have worked with us in the many roles and responsibilities employed in a full-service restaurant, cocktail bar, and brewery, thank you. We wish we could have supported you better and paid you more," their post says.
"To our loyal patrons over the years, thank you. We wish we could keep serving you Black Pepper Pils, New Hats, and Beef Belly Buns forever."