Orono-based Black Bear Brewing Company announced Thursday that it would be opening a second tap room on Exchange Street in downtown Bangor.
Black Bear owner and head brewer Tim Gallon said his 11-year-old brewery would open a 50- to 60-seat tap room in one of the two empty street-level storefronts in the Nichols Block, located at 187 Exchange St. The building, one of six purchased by ANM Properties on Exchange Street last year, is set to be the future home of the Bangor Symphony Orchestra’s administrative offices, a new arts collaborative and performance space called the Bangor Arts Exchange, and Thompson-Hamel, a financial planning and payroll firm. Black Bear will be located on the left street-level side of the building; Thompson-Hamel will be located on the right.
“We decided to open a second location in Bangor because we are from here and want to contribute to the great community that has become Downtown,” said Gallon. “We also like the vision and excitement that Adam Moskovitz with ANM Properties is bringing to the block. It’s exciting and we wanted to be a part of it.”
Gallon expects the new tap room to have between 50 and 60 seats. The tap room will feature Black Bear’s core lineup of six beers on tap, including local favorites like their flagship Gearhead Ale; there will also be a small stage for live music, and a pilot brewery on site, where Gallon will produce small batch specialty beers.
Gallon launched Black Bear Brewing Company in Orono in 2006, moving to its current Mill Street location in 2008; he opened the Orono tap room in 2012. The new Black Bear tap room in Bangor will be the first new restaurant or bar to be located on Exchange Street in well over a decade.
“There’s a renewed sense of enthusiasm for this side of downtown, and we are seeing it and feeling it every day,” said Moskovitz.
Gallon anticipates an early 2018 opening for the new tap room.