Craft beer maker Caboose got approval to serve up its pilsners, Berliner Weisse and other microbrews, along with its farm-to-fork dishes, at a new brewery in Mosaic.
They will convert an old warehouse on Eskridge Road, just south of Lee Highway, into a brewery and restaurant. The plans for the new brewery include about 160 seats, a 3,240-square foot tasting room, and beer garden on the building’s south side.
The Board of Supervisors signed off on these plans on Tuesday. This will be the second location for the one-year old brewery founded by two former local tech executives.
“I am really excited that Caboose Brewery will be expanding to the Mosaic District in Merrifield,” said Chairman Sharon Bulova. “It’s always good news when a great business chooses to grow here and stay here in Fairfax County. Every tenant who joins the mixed-use Mosaic District community helps fulfill two major goals of Fairfax County’s Economic Success Plan – diversifying our economy and creating places where people want to be.”
Caboose says that it expects that its new brewery will open next year. The brewery’s plans also make improvements to the existing site, including a landscaped, urban green area with benches, public art, bike racks and space for a future bikeshare station.
They also will build an eight-foot wide sidewalk along Eskridge Road, as well as a new crosswalk to connect with Mosaic’s Strawberry Lane. The plans also include a six-foot wide path through the urban green connecting to the sidewalks at Hilltop Road and Lee Highway.
The 1970-era warehouse that sits on a 1.35-acre site across the street from Mosaic are owned by Edens, the developer of the town center. Edens said in its zoning application that it had tried for five years to find a suitable use at this industrial property.
Opening craft breweries and distilleries on industrial properties may get easier under proposed zoning rules that the board likely will consider early next year.
Caboose had to seek a special exception for its new brewery. However, we’re proposing new rules to allow these businesses to open without zoning approval on many industrial, commercial and other properties.
The possible zoning changes would allow these manufacturers to make up to 15,000 barrels of beer, 36,000 gallons of spirits or 5,000 gallons of wine, cider or mead per year.
We’re considering these changes because craft brewing is becoming a big business in Virginia, and we want to diversify the economy. Neighboring Loudoun and Prince William counties already have specific zoning rules in place for craft breweries and distilleries.
Craft breweries employ 9,000 people and produce more than $1 billion in economic impact in the state, according to the Brewers Association. There are more than 130 licensed craft breweries in the state, including seven in Fairfax County.
To showcase the industry’s growth in Fairfax County, we co-sponsored the first-ever Workhouse Brewfest this summer. The event brought together seven craft breweries located in Fairfax, along with 34 other breweries, cideries, wineries and distilleries.
When you see the sign you know you have made it to the promised land! Thanks for the great photo faith_hope_love_and_luck! pic.twitter.com/tYJ9vKTrg7
— Caboose Brewing Co. (@CabooseBrewing) October 18, 2016