METRO WEST DAILY NEWS – J.P. and Melynda Gallagher are brewing up something special for downtown.
Lost Shoe Brewing and Roasting Company is expected to open this summer in the former Speakers nightclub at 19 Weed St., J.P. Gallagher said on Thursday.
“We always wanted to be in Marlborough, both my wife and I were born and raised in Marlborough,” said Gallagher.
Lost Shoe will be more than a brewery. It will also be a coffee roaster and coffee shop. J.P. Gallagher has been a long time homebrewer and recently graduated from the American Brewers Guild in Vermont. His wife Melynda recently completed a coffee roasting course at the Coffee Lab International School of Coffee, also in Vermont.
The idea is to be an all-day business – Lost Shoe will open at 8 a.m. to serve coffee and the brewery will begin serving beer later in the day.
“We really wanted to be as close to downtown Marlborough as possible,” said J.P. Gallagher. “The thing about breweries is that people are willing to travel, but for coffee, it’s more of a convenience. We’re not going in as a brewery that also serves coffee, or a coffee shop that happens to serve beer. We’re really equal partners. What we’re starting to see is a boom in local coffee roasters like there was with local craft beer and we thought we could capture that.”
The brewery will feature a large bar overseeing the brewing operations as well as the coffee roasting. The interior will feature bar seating, low tables, as we well as couches and coffee tables.
“We’re really going to be a beer hall and coffee shop in one spot,” Gallagher said.
Gallagher said he plans on brewing traditional German- and Belgian-style beers, as well as India pale ales and “experimental beers.”
Lost Shoe, named in honor or Marlborough’s history as a shoe-producing hub, also hopes to work with local businesses, such as the Vin Bin for cheese plates to be available at the brewery. They also hope to partner with local bakeries for food–to-go for the morning coffee rush. In addition, they hope to have food trucks and pop-up kitchens in the approximately 4,600 square foot brewery.
Both Gallaghers hope to make Lost Shoe their full-time careers. J.P. Gallagher is a manager in customer marketing for a tech company while Melynda Gallagher is an accounting supervisor in a large retail company.
“It’s quite a career change for both of us,” J.P. Gallagher said.
He said the brewery will have a canning line, which will allow them to sell both beer and nitro coffee to go. Other than that, the only distribution will be kegs to local bars.
The work of the Marlborough Economic Development Corporation sealed the deal for the Gallaghers. Last year, the MEDC took out an ad offering financial and other assistance to attract a brewery or brewpub to downtown Marlborough.
“That really solidified it for us,” said Gallagher. “We knew they wanted something like us in the city. We met with them and they’ve been super helpful. Everyone in the city has been amazing.”
Lost Shoe is the second brewery to take advantage of the MEDC’s assistance. Walden Woods Brewing Company announced it will be opening this year at 277 Main St., about two blocks from Lost Shoe.
“We’re very excited,” said Meredith Harris, executive director of the MEDC. “The ad worked. People have asked us if there’s a concern having two breweries so close to each other. What we’ve learned is two is better than one. It causes much more of a draw. This new craft beer culture is about people experiencing things, and they want to experience multiple locations.”
Harris said Walden Woods is expected to open in about 30 days.
Lost Shoe could be open this summer, Gallagher said.
“June is our aggressive timeline, but July is more likely,” he said. “We really plan to be open sometime this summer.”
This article by Norman Miller originally appeared here.