Starting this April, Kensington's St. Benjamin Brewing Company will begin canning their beers, starting with Inca, a West Coast-style India cream ale, and Wit or Witout, a ready-for-summer spiced wheat beer. They're also expanding their line of large-format bottles to include two new saisons, the Liaison Saison, a slightly spicy, slightly flowery farmhouse ale, and the Saison Du Jour IX, brewed with a saffron kick and rosewater finish. And while all that sounds super tasty, and making their beer more accessible to the public is always a good move, St. Ben has some some bigger plans in the works.
In addition to expanding their lines of beers, owners Tim Patton and Christina Burris will expand the brewery itself, adding a German brewhouse to the facility, where beer production will increase tenfold. That means distribution will now go far beyond Philly's city-limits, with cans and bottles making their way to Montgomery, Chester, Bucks County, Delaware County and South Jersey.
Furthermore, the St. Benjamin team just received a $25,000 American Street Empowerment Zone Business Grant (given to businesses that invest heavily into the South Kensington neighborhood) to build an on-site taproom, complete with 12 taps at the walnut bar, and a full kitchen, serving beer-friendly fare. The facility, up until now, has been only open to the public for tours and tastings. All that will change when the taproom opens — fans of the brewery will be able to come by, take tours, hang out, drink, and play games.
The taproom is projected to open sometime this spring, maybe early summer. Stay tuned for updates.
Note: brewery tours have been suspended until May 1 due to construction.