Motor Row brewery opening delayed until 2013

Broad Shoulders Brewing delayed by building permit issues with city

06/29/2012 12:57 PM

By Ben Meyerson

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Broad Shoulders Brewing's head honcho, Frank Lassandrello, shows off his logo and a pint of his Lake Shore Drive Lager last January in the brewery's soon-to-be-developed space at 2337 S. Michigan Ave.
File 2012

A brewery that was planning to open this summer in Motor Row has been delayed due to permit issues with the city, and likely won’t start pouring beer until January.

Broad Shoulders Brewing has all its brewing equipment ready to install at its building, 2337 S. Michigan Ave., but has been going back and forth with the city for months getting building permits, according to head brewer Frank Lassandrello.

The issue, Lassandrello said, is that they didn’t realize that the building’s top two floors had to be accessible to people with disabilities as well as the first floor — even if that part of the brewery isn’t open to the public. Working around the building’s historic facade has made it difficult as well.

“We’re way, way far behind. It’s been a real struggle dealing with the city over the historical nature of the building,” he said. “So we got set back in terms of the permits. Doing business in Chicago is incredibly difficult.”

Lassandrello said they’ve finally got all their ducks in a row, but have to wait until August to get the final sign-off on the permits. From then, it should take about three to four months to build out the building and get it finished enough to install the brewing equipment.

Broad Shoulders will have a 20- to 25-seat bar, but a production brewery will take up about three quarters of the first floor. Lassandrello's specialty will be a beer called Lake Shore Drive Lager.

With any luck, he said, he should be able to start brewing in December, and open up shop in early January.

Doing more work on the second floor will give them an opportunity to get another business in the building, though. Lassandrello said Chicago Brew Werks, a Plainfield-based home brewing supply shop, will open a retail outlet on the second floor.

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