The wonderful and talented brewers at Hops and Grain have been crucial to Woodwork at 17th.  Not only were they my first clients as I struck out to start a business, but they’ve also been gracious as I figure this thing out.  We’ve worked together on numerous projects for they’re brewery, tap room, signage…  So yeah, CRUCIAL.

When we started talking about re-outfitting their current tap room, I knew this wasn’t an undertaking i wouldn’t be able to attack alone.  Collaboration was the key.  And thats the thing about doing anything worth while or grand… It usually works better in community.  Too many guys I know would want to be “the man” and say they built such and such all by themselves.  Kinda reminds me of a kid who can’t tie his shoe but won’t except help but rather screens, “I do it by myself!!”

So anyway, I was lucky to get to work with Phil Edgerton from edge works designs.  We had meetings and meetings with Josh to find out what was needed, what the goal was for the space, the feel we were trying to achieve… there were redesigns and renderings… there were ideas that turned out great, and there were less great ideas.  But the key was working humbly with these other creatives.  Give and take.

The bar install was stage 1.  The guys at H&G pride themselves on sustainability, so we went with reclaimed wood from a decommissioned paper mill from Abilene (Josh, the owner’s hometown).  Installing this 28′ x 10′ bar turned out to be quite the 4 day undertaking.  there may have been an all-nighter, I may have thrown a tool, I may have yelled at the bar top to “DO WHAT I’M TELLING YOU TO DO!!” It was 4 days of learning.  When the deadline is fast approaching, it takes a bit of discipline to make sure the fine details are given their due attention.

I’ve loved the beer at Hops and Grain for a few years now, but I don’t think its ever tasted better than when we had the first pour at the new bar.  And now that the bar is set, finished, and helping people find community and DELICIOUS beer, we get to start stage 2… tables and benches to fill the room.

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