Update March 16 at 2:53 p.m.: Hemisphere Brewing Co. will open St. Paddy's Day weekend. Hours of operation will be 6 to 10 p.m. on Friday, March 17, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Saturday, March 18, and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday, March 19. No ticket is required; patrons pay per pour and receive a complimentary pint glass. There will also be catering by Opa! Greek Taverna.
Looks like Rockwall may be developing its own little brewery row.
A new operation, Hemisphere Brewing Co., is expected to open soon in the Dallas suburb down the street from Woodcreek Brewing Co., which opened in 2015. According to Google Maps, it will take you two minutes to walk from one to the other.
Hemisphere Brewing Co. comes from local beer lovers Brandon Mullins and Ruben Garcia, whose partnership began in 1998 when they were in a band together. After years of playing together -- Mullins on drums and Garcia on bass guitar -- the two decided to jump into brewing.
But once the duo decided to go pro, they unknowingly had a long journey ahead. Mullins and Garcia started scouting brewery locations about five years ago, landing in Rockwall in late 2014. Mullins grew up in the area and both guys love the outdoor amenities, such as Lake Ray Hubbard, that it offers. Plus, enthusiasm for local businesses practically a way of life.
"Rockwall loves Rockwall," Mullins says.
Finding a location, however, proved to be the easy part. Mullins and Garcia, who both maintained full-time jobs, spent the next several years playing telephone between the city and their contractors. In the time it took them to permit, configure and construct the brewery, Woodcreek Brewing Co. opened down the way. And once Mullins and Garcia saw what it was offering, they went back to the drawing board -- the two breweries' lineups were going to be too similar, they say.
"I would rather not have people drive out from Dallas to Rockwall, go to Woodcreek and get a blonde and come here and get a blonde," Mullins says. "The beers will taste different, but they're still the same style beer."
"So we sat back and reevaluated some stuff," he adds. "I think it brought out the best of us and our beers, too."
Hemisphere Brewing's starting lineup will now include five beers:
- Straight Dope, a New England-style IPA,
- Superfleek, a coffee porter,
- Shiver, a blueberry wheat ale,
- Gnarlacious, an English pale ale,
- and Hemisphere Grisette, which Mullins describes a French-style saison.
The brewery itself is a modest space with a four-barrel brewing system, a bar outfitted with 14 taps, a fermentation room and plenty of outdoor space Mullins and Garcia plan to develop into a beer garden and special events area.