This post has been updated on February 12, 2022 with details from co-owner/head brewer
Barred in DC has learned that a new brewery, Lost Generation Brewing Company, is coming to the edge of the Eckington neighborhood at 327 S Street NE. The ABRA ABC Board approved the brewery’s application for a manufacturer license on Wednesday (see page 16 of PDF). An application for a brewery certificate of occupancy has also been applied for, and they’re aiming to open late summer (presumably August or September) 2022. Construction starts on Valentine’s Day.
The historic warehouse (dating over 100 years) at 327 S St. NE (2 blocks north of the Alethia Tanner Park) is adjacent to the popular Metropolitan Branch Trail (MBT, multi-use but mostly bikes), and housed a former Nabisco bakery and distribution hub. The 34,000 square foot building was bought for $5.6 million in 2017, with owner’s plans to “renovate the building into small-bay spaces, creating a hub for arts collective food makers” according to the Washington Business Journal. Currently, one of the spaces is occupied by the 3,000 square foot private venue The Sun Room, from the Salt & Sundry folks.
Based on corporate filings and a USPTO trademark application, I figured out that the brewery is co-owned by local resident Jared Pulliam and his wife Anne Choe. After publishing this post initially on Friday, Feb. 11th, I was able to connect with Jared and obtain lots of great details (more verbatim below) for the new spot.
Both Jared and Anne are DC area natives, the latter has always worked in restaurants and bars-mostly in the role as manager. On the other hand, Jared started as a high school teacher (teaching mostly AP Psychology and Modern American Culture, as well as US History and Government), started homebrewing as a hobby and then got a side job at Chocolate City Brewing (the DC brewery was open 2011-2014 just up the MBT in the building that now houses Dew Drop Inn). Jared says “I’d shut down my classroom in the afternoon, pack my bags with all the papers that needed grading and head to the brewery to fire it up. I’d usually bang out my grading during the lauter. Then around midnight, I’d shut it down and try to get a few hours of sleep before doing it all again.” Realizing this was not the ideal situation, they decided that Jared should go full time into brewing, and most inspired at the time by IPAs, he got a job at Lagunitas Brewing Company in California and eventually rose to Lead Brewer (overseeing all 3 branches of production plant and helping develop the recipe for their first Hazy IPA). Wanting to realize their dream of starting a brewery in the DC area, they moved back here; the pandemic put their plans on hold, so he took a job as head brewer at Calvert Brewing Company in Upper Marlboro, Maryland.
As for the brewery itself, the space will take up nearly 5,000 square feet-roughly half devoted to the taproom and the other half for the brewing area (divided by a window wall). They will focus on IPAs and Lagers (author’s note: YES!) but with 16 taps there will still be variety. The brewery’s business will be primarily based on the taproom-they have some distribution points lined up but mostly will sell beer on tap (glass, crowlers) and cans from the taproom itself. Anne is working to make the space “more like an awesome bar than a cold corner in a brewery“; the mostly brick and exposed wood roof (which will they keep natural) will provide a great vibe.
The name Lost Generation is referring to the artists and intellectuals of the 1920s/30s who were disillusioned and moved elsewhere to places like Paris (Jared is a self-described “literary snob”). This phrase also evokes prohibition which coincided roughly in the same time frame. Jared further says “my great grandfather owned an auto shop right off L Street in Mt. Vernon Square called Owl Garage where he installed suped up suspension kits on rum runners so they wouldn’t show their weight as they snuck kegs into the city from PG County.” (here’s hoping they can pay some homage to this garage-which was at 6th and L NW and open 24 hours/day-in the brewery).
Some online sleuthing has scoped out a potential Facebook page (see logo above) launched Jan 1st, expect the website to go live later this month,
Lost Generation will join City-State Brewing in Edgewood (about 3/4 miles north) as MBT breweries, with Right Proper Brookland, Red Bear Brewing, and the new DC location of Crooked Run Fermentation (also broken by Barred in DC following a ABRA approval) in the vicinity as well.
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First off, one small edit is that I am only co-owner of Lost Generation Brewing Co. Anne Choe, who is also my wife, is the other equal owner. We are both area natives. She has always worked in restaurants and bars, mostly managing them. I on the other hand started as a high school teacher, but found a serious hobby in brewing and when an opportunity opened up for me to start working at Chocolate City Brewing (a now defunct brewery that opened the same year as D.C. Brau), I did. I’d shut down my classroom in the afternoon, pack my bags with all the papers that needed grading and head to the brewery to fire it up. I’d usually bang out my grading during the lauter. Then around midnight, I’d shut it down and try to get a few hours of sleep before doing it all again. To say the least, this wasn’t the best scenario. We decided that it would be best for me to leave teaching and go full time brewing, but if we were going to do it, we were going to go all in. At the time, the D.C. area didn’t have nearly the robust brewing culture it does now and so we looked to go somewhere with strong roots in brewing the style that we were most inspired by, IPA. So California it was. I got the job at Lagunitas in Petaluma and quickly rose to their Lead Brewer which meant I oversaw all three branches of the production plant and did all the hiring, training and managing of it as well as some of the recipe development for creating their first Hazy IPA brand. It was an awesome experience and an awesome crew. But at the end of the day, we always dreamt of coming home and opening up the brewery we always wished had been here back when we were living in D.C. With my decade of brewing and her rich front of house experience, we knew it was time to come home and make it happen.
The space is divided into two: a nearly 2500sqft taproom and an almost equal sized brewing area, divided only by a window wall, so it’s still one large open space. Our beer focus is IPA and lagers, but really, we love making and drinking good beer, no matter the style. We will have 16 taps, so there will be a good amount of variety. Our focus is the taproom. We have some hand selected distribution points that we will be going to at first, but for the most part, we’ll be sell our beer by the glass, crowler and can inside the taproom, which Anne has worked diligently on crafting a space that will feel more like an awesome bar than a cold corner in a brewery. (It doesn’t hurt that the Nabisco space is mostly brick and exposed wood roof, which we’ve left completely natural.)
Lastly, as far as timing, we’re starting construction on Monday and we hope to be serving refreshing cold one’s to people on the MBT late summer. You, included.
Calvert was once I came back to the area. Due to the pandemic, we had to put our plan on hold, so in the meantime, I took the job at Calvert to help them transform and reimagine their brand a little bit.
I taught AP Psychology and Modern American Culture, mostly. But also US History and Government.
We have been working on this for years now. We probably had our first concept art sketched up 5 years ago? And Anne and I have been dreaming of it since we’ve been together, which was 12 years ago.
Lost Generation refers to the group of artists and intellectuals of the 1920’s and 30’s which includes Hemingway, Fitzgerald, Gertrude Stein, Picasso, etc… But just folks who were disillusioned with the culture of where they were and moved to places such as Paris to find invigoration and inspiration. For us, that was California. On top of that, during that same period of time, alcohol was clearly the leading topic of discussion due to prohibition. In fact, during that time, my great grandfather owned an auto shop right off L Street in Mt. Vernon Square called Owl Garage where he installed suped up suspension kits on rum runners so they wouldn’t show their weight as they snuck kegs into the city from PG County. Also, I’m a literary snob, so the Lost Generation period is just something I adore.