Update: Bombers Bev Co. say they are aiming for a Sept. 15 opening.
With Wilmington’s brewery boom in full swing and local residents thirsty for craft beer, three longtime friends have now become business partners.
Caleb Churchwell, Jacob Wright and Zach Boylston are putting the finishing touches on Bombers Bev Co.
More than 500 varieties of bottled and canned beer from all over the world will be available at their specialty craft beer retail store and tasting room, 108 Grace St. in downtown Wilmington.
The rustic 2,000-square-foot store gets its name from the term “Bomber,” which is commonly used in the craft beer industry to describe beer packaged in a 22-fluid ounce bottle.
The store will feature two bar areas with seating: one in the front facing Grace Street with about four to five bar stools, and another in the center of the store where draft beer will be poured. Bombers will have 12 rotating draft taps, and the bar will seat 10-12 people. In addition to draft beer there will be a wide selection of cold bottles and cans that can be consumed on the premises.
“While we are a retail outlet, we did want to have a space for our customers to sit down, try some of our beer and talk with one another,” Churchwell said. “Creating a connection with customers is what this industry is all about. Everyone has a story to tell and we learn from one another.”
Churchwell, who earned a degree in chemistry at N.C. State University before making his way into the craft beer industry 10 years ago, has worked for breweries as well as for distributors. The experience helped him gain a solid understanding of the business. He keeps up with what’s happening in the world of beer by conducting research daily. He does research online and then talks with distributors.
“You always have to stay one step ahead of what’s coming,” he said.
While Churchwell will take care of the majority of ordering and inventory, Wright, an attorney by trade, will be in charge of financial operations, and Boylston, a Navy veteran and University of North Carolina Wilmington graduate, will head up marketing and social media.
Bombers Bev Co. has partnered with Port City Brew Bus, a brewery tour bus designed to bring visitors to local breweries. Bombers Bev Co. will be the pick-up and drop-off location for the tours. While Port City Brew Bus is still in the conceptual phase, the Wilmington-based military veterans behind the idea have launched an indiegogo.com site to help get their business off the ground.
For more information on the Port City Brew Bus, click here
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