By Kristen Smith
WINDSOR, ON—Brothers Joshua and Jordan Goure aim to broaden the thirst for Windsor’s craft beer with the official opening of Brew brewery and restaurant in early December.
The brothers have worked together in the Windsor foodservice and hospitality industry for about a decade, operating a variety of establishments including the now closed Pour House, the former Symbol Nightclub and the Well House.
Acting as spokespeople and brewers for the brand, Joshua said the opportunity was a new and exciting one for the brothers to explore.
Jordan noted the duo had always been interested in beer. “All of our locations that we owned or worked at in the past always had big beer selections. My brother and I are both certified beer servers on our way to becoming cicerones,” he told ORN. “We’ve always loved the flavour profiles, doing tastings. Now we’re learning the brewing side of it.”
The pair worked under a local consulting brewmaster to learn the skills and now head up brewing operations.
Jordan described Brew’s flagship creation—a traditional saison dubbed Proper Lager—as a “flavourful, yet smooth beer” with citrus undertones. “We want to bring in people that wouldn’t normally drink craft beer into the craft beer industry. We call ourselves ‘the gateway craft beer’,” he said.
“A lot of craft beer out there has very bold, very strong, very hoppy flavours, which we love, but we feel there is a huge segment of the market—which is those people out there drinking Coors Light, MGD—that we can pull over to craft beer just so they can have something local,” said Joshua.
The Goures are working on a wheat beer and, in honour of the building’s original incarnation as a chocolate factory, a chocolate stout in time for St. Patrick’s Day celebrations.
The Brew occupies the main floor and the basement (each about 2,400 square feet), with a taproom seating 40. In designing the space, Joshua said they wanted to keep the industrial feel, but bring in some European pub/restaurant character.
“It’s warm and cozy, but you can still tell it’s a brewery. We have refinished plywood floors, lots of exposed brick,” he said.
They brought on local chef Stuart Martin, formerly with Chatham Street Grill, to help design the menu and put his twist on the offerings. “We have a small menu; all we’re serving is pizzas, nachos and pretzels, so beer foods.
Everything is made in house and all of our foods have a beer ingredient in them. And I don’t mean just cooking in beer, we use hops in our salsa, we malt all of our meat, we use barley in our pizza dough,” said Jordan.
Brew’s beer, which will also be sold commercially onsite, isn’t merely for internal use. Jordon said a main portion of the business is getting their locally-brewed beer in area establishments. In the future, they plan on offering a 10 per cent discount to restaurants and bars offering solely craft beer.
“There are a lot of brew pubs and a lot of craft beer which are popping up here, which is great,” said Jordan.