Overflow Brewing opened in St. Petersburg this week, bringing the total to seven breweries in the city’s downtown alone.
There hasn’t been much attention yet beyond an announcement on their own Facebook page, but the bar was full at Overflow at 770 First Ave. N on Thursday night.
Co-owner Troy Bledsoe, an acclaimed former homebrewer who spent the past two years as head brewer at Rapp Brewing in Seminole, and his business partner Ryan Sarno, another Pinellas County native who before this was a dealer for the World Series of Poker, chatted with customers about plans to keep sour beers, Bledsoe’s specialty, on at least six of their sixteen taps.
Across the bay in Tampa, Zydeco Brew Werks in Ybor City celebrated its grand opening last week at 1902 E. 7th Ave., a renovated space that formerly housed Empire nightclub. The New Orleans-themed brewery also has a full bar and serves a full menu of Cajun food.
Head brewer Paul Rutherford won awards for his beer at Iron Hill Brewery back in Philadelphia and managing partner J. Paul Pepin spent years focused on the craft beer side of things at Pepin Distributing Company.
There were a couple firsts in south Hillsborough County recently. An Army veteran and his brother-in-law opened Valrico’s first brewery, Bullfrog Creek Brewing, in a former grocery store 3632 Lithia Pinecrest Road in January, and Leaven Brewing, billed as Riverview’s first brewery, opened its doors at 11238 Boyette Road.
And there have been others in the past six months, including Southern Lights Brewing in Clearwater and Dissent Craft Brewing in the Lealman area of St. Petersburg. Pesky Pelican, which is right off the Pinellas Trail started brewing its own late last summer, and Two Frogs Brewing in Tarpon Springs celebrated its grand opening earlier this month.
Inoculum Ale Works, a sour-only operation that brews in Spring Hill but doesn't have a tasting room, said its currently working to open one in downtown St. Petersburg at 554 First Ave. N, and the first brewery in New Port Richey, Cotee River Brewing Company, is set to open this summer at 5800 Main Street.
Altogether, there are now more than 60 craft breweries in the Tampa Bay area. Here’s an updated map to help you visualize that.