The Thirsty Monk Pub & Brewery, which took over a tiny space along East 17th Avenue's restaurant row in 2017, is up for sale. The pub has been closed since COVID-19-related shutdowns took effect in mid-March.
Owned by entrepreneur Barry Bialik, the Denver pub was an outgrowth of the Asheville, North Carolina-based string of Belgian-style breweries and beer bars. The opening here was part of an effort to expand the business across the country, and the Thirsty Monk opened a pub in Portland around the same time.
"We aren’t 100 percent decided on our future there," Bialik says in an email to Westword. "Since we definitely can’t open at the moment because of our size, we are exploring sale options out there and will decide on exactly what we do over the next 30-45 days."
Last week, Bialik told Oregon's New School blog that Thirsty Monk's Portland location would close for good due to COVID-19. “It’s certainly one of the weaknesses of being a taproom-centric brewery as opposed to a wide distributing brewery," he was quoted as saying. "If the taprooms are closed, we have no revenue. It really takes so much extra attention and monitoring of details to keep our one space open right now with all the safety measures."
An online listing for the 2,052-square-foot brewery describes it as having "a large patio, seating 24 comfortably outside, comfortable interior seating, and a large bar with interior seating of 47." There is also a ten-barrel brewhouse and a small space with a separate entrance that can be used for storage or an office.
Thirsty Monk made a splash in Denver when it took over the space from Deep Draft Brewing, which closed in 2017 after a two-year run. Bialik hired longtime local brewer Brian Grace to make a variety of beers. Just last fall, the brewery announced its intentions to start a sour and barrel-aging program as well.