Craft Beer Cellar Set to Be Our New Favorite Store

Categories: Beer

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A rendering of the future Craft Beer Cellar. | Craft Beer Cellar

St. Louis' craft breweries are growing swiftly, and to that end, local grocery stores carry several varieties. Still, it can be hard to seek out exactly what you want if you're unable to hit breweries like Perennial Artisan Ales and Second Shift, which are more than an hour away from each other. It seems the upcoming Craft Beer Cellar is an answer to our prayers.

See also: The Six Best Craft Beer Makers in St. Louis

"We're gonna try to carry just about everything, international stuff, but our main focus will be microbrews, craft beers -- anything that's small and local," co-owner Brandon Nickelson tells Gut Check. He estimates the shop will have around 1,000 different bottles. "We really wanna support our local breweries, because they're growing like crazy. Theres a lot of interesting ones out there."

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The tasting and growler station, near the front of the store. | Craft Beer Cellar

The Craft Beer Cellar was actually founded in 2010 by Kate Baker and Suzanne Schalow (lady beer geeks? We love it.) and has five locations in Massachusetts. Nickelson and his brother Ryan are franchisees for the first Missouri location -- the store is also coming to Brandon, Florida; Portsmouth, New Hampshire; and Waterbury, Vermont.

Nickelson has actually been working with beer for six years, including a similar store in Florida. "I've been in the business for a really long time, and Craft Beer Cellar is exactly what I was looking for," he says. "I really think this is a perfect fit for St. Louis."

Those 1,000 varieties will be available for purchase by the bottle, six-pack, or a create-your-own-six-pack situation. There will also be four or five specialty or rare craft beers on top of that you can sample and buy by the growler. The walk-in cooler will provide 1,000 square feet of shelving, and all the light fixtures will be LED, because fluorescent lighting is less-than-ideal for beer storage.

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The view from the rear of the store. | Craft Beer Cellar

Nickelson says he has just made initial contact with local breweries regarding stuff like that (the lease at 8113 Maryland Avenue in Clayton was just signed) but has a long way to go as far as several levels of liquor licenses plus construction in what was a jewelry store. Craft Beer Cellar will join 5 Star Burgers and Half and Half in the plaza.

"Some of those restaurants have a really cool look to them, and we want to complement what they've got going on," Nickelson says about the 2,000-square-foot space. "We're aiming for March 1, but if I showed you my list of things to do before then, it'd blow your mind."

When it's open, Craft Beer Cellar will also host beer classes, tastings and perhaps even food pairings with local restaurants. All of the employees will be Cicerone Certified. "We think it'll be a big hit," Nickelson says. "We're really just beer geeks at heart."

Gut Check is always hungry for tips and feedback. Email the author at nancy.stiles@riverfronttimes.com or follow her on Twitter.





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25 comments
Doug Syler
Doug Syler

IKEA is related to furniture but is in the news.

sievers.am
sievers.am

Clayton location? Really? bummer... 

Chris Davis
Chris Davis

Cool. I'll definitely be checking it out

Stu Katz
Stu Katz

What a racist comment, that should be in your top ten, it is as stupid as your other comments.

David Moore
David Moore

Based upon this comment I'm inclined to believe that you don't know what craft beer is or you've never left the country - possibly both?

John Shadley
John Shadley

There you go RFT ! Is your demographic 12 year olds ? GTFU !!! Great way to promote 2 new business. I would love a place that carries my favorite craft beers and brings biz/employment to St Louis and will most likely advertise in your rag. Guess you can kiss the IKEA advert account out the window stupid ! :P

Daniel Puricelli
Daniel Puricelli

Maybe we could have an Ikea anchored strip mall with this craft beer cellar and a specialty whiskey shop that serves whatever it is that Tim drinks. My money is on scotch. As for location, how about the derelict Kenrick Plaza, right across from the soon-to-be built Walmart.

katie673
katie673

"Lady Beer Geeks" is not an unusual thing p to the s. We dig high abv's too. www.hopittome.com

Tim Murphy
Tim Murphy

This town needs more beer farts. Yep screw millions of dollars of additional revenue from Ikea. We need more beers farts and watered down swill Americans call beer.

Kyle Cheesborough
Kyle Cheesborough

Matt Menietti aka 'most interesting man in the world', surely this will break your Dos Equis addiction

Matt Menietti
Matt Menietti

cc: Paul Sorenson Chris LeBeau Kyle Cheesborough

Sue Kasen
Sue Kasen

not familiar with this company

Brian Sax
Brian Sax

" but if I showed you my list of things to do before then, it'd blow your mind." Is changing the growler law in MO one of those things? Cause that would be awesome!

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