Minnesota ‘s Surly Brewing Announces Indefinite Closure
Another major Minnesota dine-in establishment has taken a hit due to COVID-19.
On Wednesday, September 2, Surly Brewing Company -- one of Minnesota's largest and most renowned breweries locally and nationwide -- announced its indefinite closure beginning November 3.
"Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in March," the brewery shared in a post on social media, "Surly has had to adapt, change, pivot, and change again, all in the hope of pushing the two sides of the business--the Brewery and the Beer Hall--through this unprecedented situation and the economic disaster that’s followed."
Surly goes on to share how -- despite adapting to the ever-changing demands and requirements of the state and CDC regarding COVID-19 -- it became clear that the nature of the brewhall environment and the dangers and risks of the virus "don’t mix." For that reason, Surly has "made the gut-wrenching decision to close the Beer Hall indefinitely on Nov. 2."
"We ran all the numbers," the social media post goes on to say. "We looked at all the possibilities. But try as we might to find a way to keep the doors open and our team employed, the writing was on the wall: There was no longer a way forward for the Beer Hall." Compared to the same time last year, Beerhall sales are down 82%, cites Surly. If the hall was to stay open for dine-in service this winter, the brewery expects it would lose at least another $750k to $1 million. "A drastic change was needed to stabilize the company and ensure the continued operations of our core business, brewing."
The announcement comes hot on the heels of another announcement made just two days before that some of Surly's hospitality staff intended to pursue unionization. Management assures that the decision to close the Beerhall in November is not in response to the other announcement, but one that has been in the works for some time.
"We respect their decision to turn to an outside organization for representation and will continue the dialogue. That does not change the fact that our plans to close the Beer Hall were put in place weeks ago with the announcement planned for this week." Surly concludes its lengthy social media post with a plea to "support your local bars and restaurants as they face the tough times ahead."
Surly Brewing began in 2005 in Brooklyn Center before opening their 50,000 square foot brewhouse, beer hall, beer garden, event center and restaurant in 2014 on the border of Minneapolis and St. Paul.