Smoketown Brewing

Brunswick’s Smoketown Brewing Station owner Dave Blackmon stands in front of the building that was once a fire station. He now has plans to expand to a location in Frederick.

Frederick residents will no longer have to travel only to Brunswick to get a beer from Smoketown Brewing Station.

The Brunswick-based brewery is expanding into the city of Frederick, taking over the spot recently vacated by House Cat on Sagner Avenue. The new Smoketown Creekside will be a brewhouse like its original location, with some of the same beers and ones only offered at the Frederick location, said owner David Blackmon.

While it will be its own unique space with its own attributes, Blackmon wants to carry over the Smoketown story and design. There will be 12 taps at Smoketown Creekside, Blackmon said.

“We’re very excited about the project,” he said. “We love the fact that we’re bringing Smoketown into the city of Frederick. We really think it’s going to be an asset to the growing brewing industry in downtown.”

Coming to Frederick had to do with its critical mass, especially of beer drinkers. There is more foot traffic, Blackmon said.

“Frederick has a great beer scene,” he said.

With two locations, Blackmon said he expects to cater to different populations. There will be people who come to the Brunswick location, including those who come from northern Virginia, and those who enjoy the Frederick lifestyle and will stop by the new location.

Blackmon is currently working to obtain the licensure for the new location. He said he would like to open in July, but that will depend on if he can secure the needed licensing.

The Smoketown expansion is good for the brewery and Frederick, said Richard Griffin, director of economic development for the city. Smoketown will be moving into a spot where there are already breweries located. That type of clustering helps keep people in the city a little long, Griffin said.

“All of these places kind of feed on each other,” he said.

Each of the breweries has their own identities and styles, Blackmon said. The new spot shares will be neighbors with Idiom Brewing Company and Attaboy Beer.

“I think we will have fun mixing up our styles,” he said.

There are no current plans to do any brewing collaborations with Attaboy, but Brian Ogden said he is excited to welcome Smoketown to the neighborhood.

“It’s a good relationship,” he said.

The two companies will give their used malt byproduct, created during the brewing process, to the same farmer. Byproduct makes good feed for farm animals, Ogden said.

And since the two breweries use similar materials in their beer, the two can borrow from each other in a pinch, just like neighbors might borrow a cup of sugar from each other, he said.

“We’re happy to be neighbors with them,” Ogden said.

Update on Smoketown’s Brunswick event space

All of Blackmon’s efforts are focused on the new expansion, he said, and he placed the event space he planned for the Brunswick location on the backburner.

“I’m not giving up on the project, but I don’t know what the future holds,” Blackmon said.

He spoke with county councilmen Phil Dacey and Jerry Donald, and Brunswick councilmen John Dayton and Andrew St. John reached out about the space, as did members of Brunswick Main Street. But there has been no movement with county officials, he said.

“We’re on two different pages there,” he said.

Blackmon said trying to bring the event space to Brunswick has been physically and emotionally draining, and at this point, it does not appear to be likely.

“Which is frustrating,” he said. “Which is disheartening.”

Follow Heather Mongilio on Twitter: @HMongilio

Heather Mongilio is the health and Fort Detrick reporter for the Frederick News-Post. She can be reached at hmongilio@newspost.com.

(20) comments

FCPS-Principal

Just another beer joint serving up frozen grease fried gunk and hyped up beer. A nice place for Millennials to go after a workout at the gym to fatten up their hips and hind ends. While these "craft" bottles have fancy labels and fancy names like "Poopy Dog IPA", "Rat's Azz Ale" and "Stupid Stinky Stout", what comes out of the bottle is no different than what comes out of a bottle of Pabst, at 4X the cost. Clearly, the craft beer scene is begging for a Palessi event. I'm surprise one hasn't been pulled off yet.

DMSchobel

FCPS-Principal: Actually, the breweries generally don't have their own kitchens, so they present a good opportunity for the food trucks in Frederick to show what they can do. Mayta's Peruvian Cuisine, Gambrill Mountain Food Company and others have freshly made, high quality menu options. Try getting out more. It may help with your outlook on things.

Joeseamhead

I will vouch for both of the trucks mentioned, especially the Gambrill Mt. truck! Their food is better than many Frederick restaurants.

Roboticbrady

It must be tough to not know anything about the craft beer scene but desperately feel the need to comment on it.

The local breweries don't serve 'frozen grease fried gunk'. Most don't even have food. Instead they often have local food trucks with delicious options.

To think that 'the bottle is no different than what comes out of a bottle of Pabst' is really sad. It's like saying you can't taste the difference between a well seasoned and perfectly cooked filet and some hamburger meat.

Commenting on 'Palessi event' shows you don't really understand the slightest thing about the brewery scene.

rbtdt5

Never had a smoketown but anything has to be better than that awful House Cat.

rnrbug

Cant wait Smoketown will be a awesome addition to the creek. Congratulations to the crew on this new endeaver

joelp77440

I think the term "market saturation" applies here.

LocalLocal

I'm biased because I love craft beer (and Smoketown!), but “Market Saturation” almost isn’t a thing for breweries. Each brewery has a different vibe, attracts a different crowd, specializes in different beers, etc. Much like restaurants – they all serve food, but the menus and atmosphere vary greatly. Also, many craft beer enthusiasts enjoy visiting multiple breweries in one day to sample several different beers. When there are multiple breweries within walking distance, the area becomes a destination for people looking to do just that. You can look at Leesburg and other areas in Northern Virginia who’ve capitalized on this for proof it’s a revenue-driving endeavor. Even though there isn’t a hotel downtown yet, with Uber and Lyft service in Frederick, someone from out of town could easily make a weekend of visiting Frederick to check out the many breweries we have.

FCPS-Principal

You should try a Hamms.

Joeseamhead

Yeah? Go into any one of them on a Friday, Saturday, or Sunday. They’re all slammed. Along with Old Mothers, too. I’m as surprised as anybody that they all seem to be thriving as long as they put out a quality beer and are consistent.

FCPS-Principal

Quality beer? Is that like the "Quality" dog food from China?

Joeseamhead

FCPS, sorry if you don’t appreciate it. The beer, and the breweries, have brought a local flavor in more ways than one to towns both small and large across the country. The recipes are as varied as teas or soups. Nobody likes every single one of them, but to dismiss the entire selection of them, if you like to drink beer, is pretty closed minded. A few years ago I wasn’t very open to trying them, but I have grown to appreciate many of the finer libations out there.But then again, at anywhere’s from a 4 to 12% alcohol content many are not for lightweights, thus they still have mass produced swill for people that still need their training wheels.

Roboticbrady

It does not at all - the breweries are all packed and each provides a distinct type of beer and experience. They are all thriving. House cat did not fail because of 'market saturation'.

LocalLocal

The Brunswick location definitely won't close. There aren't many other options, and it's become a beloved town staple. I'm excited that Smoketown's succeeding enough for an expansion and look forward to visiting their new location in Frederick!

BwickGirlAtHeart

Yes!! I hope they succeed. They’ve been great for the town of Brunswick!!

Joeseamhead

Brick Girl, Smoketown has their work cut out for them to compete against some of the others in Frederick. They can’t sit on their laurels. This town has got a concentration of well versed brewers that are excelling at constantly expanding their knowledge and quality of their product.

public-redux

I really like their Potomac IPA.

KMRD1

I see Smoketown closing in Brunswick.

kzat82

I don't. I think their success down there has been based mostly on the absence of other places to drink.

BwickGirlAtHeart

Lets hope not. Bwick used to be nothing but bars and they all closed shop. This Brewery is different & I hope it stays around for a good long time!!

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