Raise a glass to this pair!
A local beer-making couple recently took home a national award as the entrepreneurs work to move their growing suds operation into its own brick-and-mortar brewery. And after spending half a decade bottling their brews at other sites, the twosome is excited to toast its next chapter inside the new Williamsburg space, according to one half of the duo behind Grimm Artisanal Ales.
“For the past five years, we haven’t had our own production facility — instead we rent equipment at existing commercial breweries around the East Coast,” said Lauren Grimm, who with her husband Joe received the title of Young Entrepreneurs of the Year from the U.S. Small Business Administration. “We were super excited to receive the award.”
Officials from the federal agency for mom-and-pop shops recognized the 5-year-old ale outfit’s early success and growth — along with the creative problem solving that allowed its owners to expand their business without a permanent home — in awarding the Grimms the honor over competitors from New York City, Long Island, and seven upstate counties, according to information from the association.
And the brewers, who accepted the title at a May 1 event, previously received two loans backed by the association to grow their business. The pair invested that cash into building out their independent space on Metropolitan Avenue between Morgan Avenue and Catherine Street, which Grimm said will be a far cry from the Gowanus apartment where she and her husband taste-tested their beers before sending them off to be made at other sites.
“It obviously means a lot to our business, in terms of inviting customers to our own tap room and being able to present our beer in the best light possible at our bar,” she said. “It also enables us to have more control and oversight during the brewing and fermentation processes.”
Grimm Artisanal Ales is known for its seasonal brews that frequently rotate — there’s no flagship draft, according to Grimm — but the pair gravitates towards traditional German sour beers packed with fruity, dry hops, as well as suds known as “pop beer” that tastes like a creamy frozen treat, she said.
“We brew limited-edition batches — a lot might only be produced once, whereas others come around a few times a year and are more seasonable,” Grimm said.
And the co-owner said that moving the business into its new digs this summer will give her and her husband even more opportunities to craft one-of-a-kind ales for their customers, who can try the brews at establishments including Spuyten Duyvil and Sugarburg Williamsburg, and Gold Star Beer Counter in Prospect Heights.
“We’ll have full control over the kinds of beer, so we don’t ever have to question what we’re doing,” Grimm said.