It was a day 80 years in the making.
Hamilton’s first brewery in 80 years — Municipal Brew Works — opened Wednesday as more than 75 people lined up to sample four brews that were on tap for the grand opening.
Courageous Wheat IPA, Approachable Blonde Ale, Station 2 Rye Pale Ale and Batch#004 Experimental Porter were on tap for customers who formed a line out of the doors of the former fire station when it opened at 4 p.m.
Sean Willingham, the head brewer at Municipal Brew Works, was pleased with the early turnout and said the business is poised to for a long run in the city.
“This is a great day that we have all been waiting for and the turnout is very positive,” he said. “We are ready and the support of the city has been terrific.”
Municipal Brew Works was formed by five founding partners, two of whom live or were raised in Hamilton. Between them they constitute nearly 50 years of collective brewing experience, according to the city.
Also excited to see the opening were three food truck vendors, ready to sell their cuisine to the crowd. The brewery is hoping to partner with a variety of food truck vendors and local eateries to provide some sustenance for thirsty customers, according to the owners.
CW BBQ, of Middletown, was one of the vendors at the grand opening and the co-owners are hoping their appearance is the first of many at the brewery.
“We are excited to here at the grand opening and we are looking forward to this being a nice event tonight and working with them in the future,” said co-owner Lee Corder.
Shawn Stidham, director of sales for Courtyard by Marriott in downtown Hamilton, said the brewery will be a good neighbor and should help the revitalization of the city’s downtown.
“When you have a new business open then it attracts people to downtown and the area and that is a good thing,” he said.
The new brewery joins several others that have recently opened or are in the works in Butler County.
A state law passed in 2013 cut start-up costs for micro-breweries and made it easier for a growing number of craft distilleries and brewers to sell to the public, helping trigger growth and expansion of the emerging industry in Ohio.