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As published in Toledo Business Journal - June 1, 2021

Tecumseh Brewing Company's taproom

Tecumseh Brewing Company is renovating its 6,000 square foot production site

TBC renovating taproom in Tecumseh

Tecumseh Brewing Company (TBC) is renovating its 6,000 square foot production site and converting the front half into a taproom by adding a taprow to its walk-in cooler, expanding the restrooms to accommodate customers, adding tables, and utilizing its food truck (Truck D and Flavor Flav) as its on-site kitchen at its location at 105 East Russell Road in Tecumseh.

According to Kyle DeWitt, general manager and co-founder, TBC has over an acre of open field that it is opening as its biergarten. Eventually, TBC would like to add an outdoor play facility for families, additional outdoor live music options, and continue with its outdoor events such as Oktoberfest, Backyard Olympics, etc.

“Our downtown pub is made up of two combined storefronts, and over the years our continued growth has led to a customer logjam. Our craft food kitchen has continued to grow to the point where we had to expand brew production off-site to accommodate the growing kitchen operation. Within a few months of our grand opening in 2015, we established our production site about a mile away,” explained DeWitt. “With the downtown pub becoming more and more busy, we had a glaring need for more downtown pub space or we could open the unused portion of our production site, so we began moving in that direction, only to accelerate our efforts once COVID-19 changed our operation and our capacities became restricted. TBC began over six years ago as a shared brewpub concept of myself and business partner / brewer Tim Schmidt.”

TBC had already begun utilizing the location as a makeshift taproom at the beginning of the pandemic. TBC installed the taprow, began upgrading several areas of the dining area, added tables, and launched the food trucks.

Photo of Tecumseh Brewing Company's founders

Tim Schmidt, head brewer and cofounder, and Kyle DeWitt, general manager and cofounder of Tecumseh Brewing Company

“We hope to finish renovating the bathrooms by end of May, and parking lot addition by mid-summer,” said DeWitt.

Craig Spiegel handled the renderings for the renovated facilities, and TBC is utilizing several local contractors with the team comprised of several customers and supporters who work in the trades.

“We just dove in feet first to get the site operational, which it has been since June. Several of the earlier projects were installing the taprow, adding furniture, upgrading our roll-up door main entrance, and creating the industrial park taproom atmosphere,” explained DeWitt. “However, the restroom renovation is the largest internal project, then the parking lot and privacy fence afterwards are the final phases. We’re also going to paint the building and continue to upgrade the aesthetics as we go. Ultimately, we’d like to add a prep and production kitchen to the site to allow for separation of menu creation and food production between food truck, downtown pub, and production site pub.

Photo of four TBC beers on a picnic table

Some of the beer available at
Tecumseh Brewing Company

“This will also allow for Truck D to become more mobile, while keeping both sites operational from a craft food standpoint. Currently, we are jam-packed at our downtown pub with prep for multiple operations in the same location. Given that we are a craft kitchen, that prides ourselves on in-house menu creation and execution, our limited space to do so has become a challenge,” he added.

According to DeWitt, TBC’s entire brewhouse operation is visible from the dining room. Truck D and Flavor Flav is its food truck and offers a unique menu every week, differing from the downtown pub craft menu to provide variety. TBC has also added a couple canners to provide more brew-to-go options, with both canners housed at the production site.

“All TBC craft brews and ciders that are available at the pub will also be offered at the production site,” said DeWitt. “Our food truck is an ever-evolving concept of craft food comprised of artisan burritos, street tacos, tostadas, and empanadas”

DeWitt noted that the project has resulted in a few jobs, and as TBC adds more dates to its schedule, the company will add more crew. TBC has also increased its management team to assist with its operational objectives.

“When we are all set on-site with all renovations, we’ll have added almost a dozen jobs by expanding into the production site and loading up the food truck schedule,” said DeWitt.

The taproom is located within an industrial park in south Tecumseh, which DeWitt said the community hasn’t experienced yet.

“Many great breweries have utilized the concept, and when we looked at our production site, we realized we could do it as well. Pairing the site with our food truck ideas was a no-brainer in an effort to open up more craft food and brew pairing concepts, while executing these ideas within the confines of our existing properties. The pandemic nudged our long-term plans into the immediate, so thankfully we had the vision already planned out and the food truck already in the process of getting licensed when COVID-19 hit,” concluded DeWitt.