After several delays in construction at the King Street Station project downtown and more than two years after signing their lease, brothers Chris and Mike Dial are set to open WanderLinger Brewing Company at 1208 King St. on Thursday.
As is the case for many homebrewers-turned-pro, Mike, 36, decided to open his own brewery after 10 years of brewing in his North Shore home. Calling it a "hobby that got out of control," Mike said he began sketching up a business plan a few years ago.
"WanderLinger" is a name created and inspired by Mike and his wife who love to be outdoors and use it as their "backpacking philosophy," Mike said.
"We wander, we linger, we are not really in a rush to get anywhere," he said. "It's kind of a life philosophy."
That theme of wandering and adventure is tied into the tap handles behind the bar, which are made from walking sticks. To start, there will be 12 beers on tap with different varieties such as a pale ale, India pale ales, American-style porter, German amber, German lager, Russian imperial stout, English special bitter and saison.
While Mike has a passion for brewing good beer, his older brother Chris, 40, could help with the business side of things. Chris was a regional manager for Enterprise Holdings for over a decade, and the brothers and co-owners have made it a family affair with their mother and brother-in-law in town just a week before the planned opening to help paint the 6,000 square-foot-space.
WanderLinger is a part of the King Street Station project by Urban Story Ventures and developer Jimmy White with partner Hiren Desai of 3H Group Hotels.
WanderLinger is just one tenant in the six-story building that is 105 years old.
In July, White said the King Street Station building would be getting the brewery, new eateries and includes 70,0000 sq ft. of office space. The $30 million project will also include the addition of Goodfellas Pizzeria on the north end of the building.
The Lexington, Ky.-based pizza chain serves specialty pies and subs with names, like "Fugetaboutit," "Frank Sinatra," "Dean Martin," "Tommy 'Two Times,'" and of course, "Goodfella." An opening date has not been announced yet and a company spokesperson could not be reached for comment.
The WanderLinger brothers said they hope to attract the after-work crowd from the medical offices that will be above them and the other businesses surrounding the brewery. The Moxy Hotel is set to open Nov. 15, and Chris said he is expecting customers from that development, as well.
"Really, we are hoping to attract anybody who likes beer," Chris said.
The brewery space will also include an art exhibit in one room, a stage for live music and seating for 120 people, including a beer garden that will be open by the time the brewery holds its grand opening Nov. 30-Dec. 2. WanderLinger will hold their soft opening this week on Thursday from 4-10 p.m. For more information, visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/WanderLinger BrewingCompany.
"The art is just something that draws in a different crowd of people, and when you don't have food it's about what we can offer that's different," he said.
While WanderLinger won't have food at first, Chris said they will eventually have food trucks lined up for most days of the week. Guests are also welcome to bring in outside food or get food delivered to the taproom. Packaged snack items will be available for purchase.
WanderLinger will be open 4-10 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday, noon to midnight Friday and Saturday and open from noon to 8 p.m. on Sunday. They are closed on Mondays.
The new brewery will open this week before construction is completed to open King Street between Market Street and 11th Street. But Richel Albright, a spokeswoman for Mayor Andy Berke, said work crews hope to have King Street open by the time the new Moxy Hotel opens in mid November.
Contact staff writer Allison Shirk at firstname.lastname@example.org or 423-757-6651.