Editor's Note: This post has been updated from its original version, which stated Pedal Haus' grand reopening would be in late October. The date has since been pushed back to early November due to construction setbacks.
Earlier this summer, we told you Pedal Haus Brewery in Tempe was closing its doors for expansive renovations. Well, the Mill Avenue drinking destination is almost ready to unveil a new look and new menu, and yesterday, we got a sneak peek at what you can expect.
Just about every square inch of the brewery and restaurant has been altered, with the main goal being to shift the focus from being a restaurant to being a brewery. According to owner Julian Wright, the previous design also left a lot of space unused, so the renovations aimed to use space more efficiently and make each area more cozy.
The updated design includes a new entrance off the patio, which leads to a large, decorative silo and five communal bungalows with private fire pits. Each bungalow will offer its own television and sound system, so drinkers can tune in whatever football game or sporting event they choose. With seating for about a dozen people, each area will also be available for smaller parties during events.
Off the former patio, there's a new bar, which will overlook several community tables, the outdoor stage, and a new gaming area. Wright says the expanded offerings will include multiple corn hole games, two ping-pong tables, and more.
Inside, much of the former dining room has been transitioned into brewing space, which will allow Pedal Haus' head brewer Doc Osborn to increase production to about 7,700 kegs annually. The additional brewing capacity means Pedal Haus will be able to introduce an expanded lineup of 14 brews, as well as distribute beer throughout the metro Phoenix area. The brewery's beer list includes craft and seasonal offerings such as a barrel-aged Belgian-Style Quad, Pear Saison, Pumpkin Ale, and American Heritage Lager.
Wright says he also plans to offer brewery tours so Pedal Haus fans can check out the behind-the-scenes action.
The traditional dining area has been shrunk down to about 44 seats, though there's also a glass-encased private dining room that can accommodate about two dozen diners. But don't let the smaller dining room lead you to think there's less of a focus on food. Wright's brought in chef Dennis Martinez, former executive chef of SanTan Brewing Company and Prescott Brewing Company, to launch a new menu that's intended to help the kitchen put out food faster than before.
There are some signature dishes still in place, including the restaurant's popular chicken pot pie, mussels, and tempura-battered cheese curds. But there is also plenty new fare to try, including chili lime butter and Sriracha popcorn, a beer-can chicken sandwich, and chili chicken verde. A wood-fired oven located in view of a new kitchen bar means the addition of flatbreads topped with everything from prosciutto and fig to sausage and sage.
We tried the brewery's new chicken wings, which get smoked and then flash-fried to combine moist meat and a thin, crisp exterior. Served without sauce, the wings come with a side of creamy, tangy Alabama white barbecue sauce. The chile chicken verde is also a dish worth trying. Served in a cast-iron ramekin, this chile is both light and surprisingly spicy and comes with a side of hot flour tortillas for dipping.
Finally, the brewery's former entry has been closed off and turned into a lounge area and spirit-focused bar. While the back bar is all about the beer — think a dozen or so taps and a growler fill station — the front bar will be the place to grab a cocktail and sink into "low snaking furniture," Wright says.
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Just like before, Pedal Haus will offer happy hour Monday through Saturday from 3 to 6 p.m. — and Wright let us in on a little-known secret. Mention or tag Pedal Haus on social media and you can get happy-hour pricing for an extra 30 minutes. Wright says he also hopes to introduce a Sunday brunch menu later down the line, and will launch Sunday Funday drink specials when the brewery reopens. Football fans and those looking to do a little day drinking can expect $3 Pedal Haus brews, $3 mimosas, $4 Bloody Marys, and $5 margaritas all day on Sunday.
Pedal Haus' grand opening won't be until Thursday, November 3 but the brewery will soft-open with a limited menu on Thursday, September 29. Biker lovers and beer drinkers can also count on the brewery hosting a Tour de Fat Wake and Bike Beer Breakfast on Saturday, October 1, that includes an all-you-can-eat English breakfast and a Pedal Haus beer, New Belgium beer, or mimosa for $10.
The brewery will also host an Oktoberfest kick-off party on Thursday, October 6.