With the opening of its new location on the Southside on Thursday, Heaven & Ale will have locations in three bustling boroughs of the Chattanooga drinking and dining scene — and that's going to be enough for now, said owner Joe Winland.
"Once the Southside is open, I don't know that there's a next thing," said Winland, whose business began as a craft beer tasting room and growler shop on the North Shore in 2013. "We're committed to focusing on the two taprooms and the production brewery."
The Southside location puts the local craft beer brand in an in-demand neighborhood where they've been trying since 2016 to land, Winland said.
"It has been hard to find the right property," he said. "We see it as Chattanooga's highest potential area."
This location of Heaven & Ale features the most extensive food menu of all the locations, with a few entrees, some appetizers and shareables, he said. Along with Heaven & Ale brews, the Southside spot will offer guest brews, ciders, seltzers and wine.
Chattanooga area breweries
Chattanooga Brewing Company
Heaven & Ale
Hutton & Smith
Monkey Town Brewing (Dayton)
The Terminal Brewhouse
"The menu is ambitious for us," Winland said. "The market has demanded we do it."
With 8,000 square feet and an fenced-in outdoor patio area that features a bocce ball court and a mural by a local artist, the location will be kid friendly, pet friendly and comfortable, he said.
Winland and his wife Kathryn came to Chattanooga from the Atlanta area in 2013 to open their craft beer tasting room and growler shop on the North Shore. By 2015, they had a Heaven & Ale location in Ooltewah, and in late 2017, they stood up a full-scale production brewery on the North Shore.
"We've expanded into brewing because of all the love Chattanooga has shown us," Kathryn Winland said.
Tony Giannasi is a local craft beer expert with a deep background in home-brewing and a career in alcohol distribution that puts him the middle of the action when it comes to local craft beer trends. Heaven & Ale has carved out a niche in brewing beers that get people talking, he said.
Heaven & Ale on the Southside
When: Thursday, Jan. 16, at noon
Where: 338 E. Main St.
"They do radical brewing," Giannasi said. "Their Love Supreme is the best beer in Chattanooga. It's a creme brulee coffee stout, and it's delicious."
The expansion of the craft beer scene in Chattanooga has accelerated in the last five years to include about a dozen local production breweries. The challenge as the market expands is for each brewery to differentiate itself, Giannasi said.
"You need to be on people's minds to survive," he said. "There's room for more, but if you come into this market, you need to bring your niche with you."
While it's growing more competitive, the local brewery culture is collaborative and the market is far from saturated, Winland said.
"The market is only going to get better as more people flock to Chattanooga," he said. "We're just hitting our stride."
Contact Mary Fortune at firstname.lastname@example.org or 423-757-6653. Follow her on Twitter at @maryfortune.