Local beer aficionados can soon sip a locally crafted brew fresh from the tap when Elizabeth City’s first microbrewery opens late this fall in the downtown area. Thomas and Tabitha Reese, owners of the new Ghost Harbor Brewing Co., are looking to attract those with a taste for craft beer and newcomers who may be trying one for the first time.
“We’ll have eight taps when we open with styles ranging from Pale Ale and IPA to Porter and Stout,” said Thomas, an avid home brewer and business manager. “We want to introduce really fresh, craft beer in the classic styles. Later, I’ll experiment and throw in a bunch of different styles and flavors for the community to try.”
Operating as a four-barrel brewery, Ghost Harbor Brewing Co. is located at 606-B East Colonial Ave. in a building that served as a horse stable and livery in the early 1900s. When completed, patrons can visit the indoor tasting room or take their drinks outside to the adjoining and recently renovated Palin’s Alley, an Elizabeth City landmark. A selection of local wines from nearby Sanctuary Vineyards will be offered, and take-out dining from nearby restaurants is encouraged. Hoppin’ Johnz New South Cuisine sits adjacent to the brewery, and a variety of independently owned restaurants are within an easy walk.
In addition to putting the finishing touches on the building, the couple, who resides with their family in Elizabeth City, has enjoyed spreading the word about their venture. Thomas spoke about the “Science of Brewing” at a continuing education night at Port Discover, talked up the business at a Committee of 100 meeting of local business leaders and staged a pop-up event during October’s First Friday ArtWalk event.
“There’s certainly a buzz about what we’ve got going on,” said Thomas. “And this is a neat little spot. Our business goals are to operate efficiently, ensure our growth is sustainable and create good jobs for people here in Elizabeth City.”