Great Raft Brewing has announced a total renovation of its tasting room.
Brewing operations will continue but the taproom is closed for renovations Wednesday, Sept. 12 through Saturday, Sept. 15 and will re-open to the public on Wednesday, Sept. 19. There will be a grand re-opening celebration for the new space on Saturday, Sept. 22.
The brewery sold its first beer in October 2013 as the first operating brewery in Shreveport since Prohibition and first opened its doors to the public in December of 2013 with one of the first purpose-built tasting rooms in the state.
After nearly five years of hosting guests from across the region, founders Lindsay and Andrew Nations wanted to renovate the space to better accommodate even more of their award-winning beer and provide a more comfortable environment in which customers can enjoy a pint.
“When we were building the brewery, every last dollar we had went into the best equipment and creating the best production environment possible to ensure the highest quality throughout every step of the brewing process. We built the tasting room on a shoe-string budget, so we are excited to put a little more care and focus into some updates that will make the tasting room an even better place to come together over a beer,” said co-founder and vice president Lindsay Nations.
The new taproom and bar will feature additional seating and even more tap space, tripling the number of beers the brewery can have available at any given time. The brewery will also now feature a number of non-alcoholic options as well, including locally brewed cold brew coffee on nitro.
Over the last five years Great Raft has received numerous awards and recognition from across the country and industry.
“Great Raft always has been and will be about the beer first and foremost. We are humbled by all the support from the community that has propelled us to this point and look forward to sharing and enjoying even more beer with everyone in a more comfortable setting,” added Andrew Nations, co-founder and President of Great Raft Brewing.
Below are some highlights of the renovation.
Beer – “We are often reshuffling our draft lineup to make room for new releases. We simply don’t have enough room to pour all our current offerings on tap. Moving forward, we will have over 30 taps available for year-round, seasonal and vintage beers (Note: Nearly triple the current number of taps).”
Menus – “One of the main goals of our tasting room has always been beer education. Over the years, we have had the opportunity to talk to folks all over the world about our beer. Printed menus will allow us to provide even more details in an easy to digest format. Guest are encouraged to take them home!”
Food – “No, we aren’t adding a restaurant. Our focus will always be beer. We are proud to continue supporting our local food truck community. Four food trucks got started at Great Raft and have now moved on to thriving brick and mortar locations. We are proud to play a small part in their success.”
Coffee – “It takes a lot of coffee to brew beer. The production staff typically goes through five pounds of locally roasted coffee per week. The new bar will offer a rotating selection of cold brew coffee served on nitro from roasters from around the world. Coffee and beer, what could possibly go wrong?”
Sound – “We have changed the room up a bit to help with acoustics in what used to be a loud environment. While still lively, we hope the new audio system and sound dampening measures will result in a better environment for relaxing over great beer.”
Seating – “We are adding over 20 additional chairs and benches for groups and more dedicated seating areas.”