North Vancouver has one of the most bustling brewery districts in the Lower Mainland, although it is one that many from outside the community might not even know exists.
A new pop-up venue will give people in Lonsdale Quay a taste of the many exceptional beverage makers in the area. Opening this month and running until the end of August, The Brewyard is setting up on the ground floor of the market.
On Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays throughout the summer months, enjoyers of adult beverages can order a rotating selection from the seven breweries, cidery, distillery and winery of The Shipyards Brewery District. The Brewyard will open for rotating events on Thursday nights starting in June, and can host private functions on weekdays.
The idea for the pop-up started when Lonsdale Quay approached Copperpenny Distilling co-owner Jenn Kom-Tong and Windfall Cider co-owner Nathaly Nairn, who have previously run community events in the nearby brewery district. The marketplace brewery space has been empty since Green Leaf Brewing exited last August and is set to be the new home of Strathcona Brewing later this year.
The prime waterfront space was facing the prospect of a lonely summer.
“It’s such a perfect space,” Kom-Tong said. “So the two of us put our heads together and came up with this concept.
“We’ve called it the Brewyard, basically to showcase the Shipyards Brewery District because there’s just not a lot of info out there. We all do our own thing,” she said.
But the bright patio location, facing thousands of tourists pouring out of the adjacent SeaBus terminal, is sure to attract more awareness.
Inside the pop-up is a casual atmosphere, featuring picnic benches, artificial turf, a jumbo Connect Four game and a photobooth. People that wander in from the marketplace are welcome to bring their food with them into the venue.
Large logos of the brewery district businesses are pasted on the pop-up’s windows, and patrons can collect maps and other information about the local craft beverage producers.
“We wanted this space to be treated like a tourist office for the district,” Kom-Tong said. One of each of the producers’ beverage offerings will be on display, but only a select few will be on sale at one time.
“Then we rotate out every week to get different offerings, so that you’re not just staying here instead of doing a brewery tour,” she said. "This is just a little like a little hint of what there is.”
In the works is a painting on a partition wall that will feature a timeline of the brewery district’s history, which features firstcomers Beere Brewing Co., House of Funk and Streetcar Brewing, who fought for and won more progressive zoning in 2019 – and continues on with new additions like Braggot Brewing and Shaketown Brewing Co.