Mar 30, 2022 - Food and Drink

Concord brewery Southern Strain to open taproom in Plaza Midwood

Southern Strain 1

Photo: Laura Barrero/Axios

Plaza Midwood’s brewery scene continues to grow with Concord-based Southern Strain Brewing’s expansion to Central Avenue.

After months of supply-chain-related delays, Southern Strain opens Friday, April 1, in the new 1800 Central building next door to Harris Teeter.

Why it matters: Expansion was crucial for Southern Strain after a challenging year, the brewery’s co-founder Jake Allen told Axios last year.

  • Unlike larger breweries, Southern Strain couldn’t brew enough beer to can and turn the same profits. “Distribution was a tough game to win,” Allen said. “We needed to expand to last.”

[Related Axios story: Canned beers like Juicy Jay are keeping Charlotte’s beer scene afloat]

southern strain plaza midwood
Southern Strain’s new location is in the new 1800 Central building. Photo: Emma Way/Axios

What to expect: “Variety,” according to Allen. “We try to keep something for everybody” in the 2,500-square-foot tasting room, he said.

  • The brewery has indoor and outdoor seating and fits about 85 people.
  • There’s parking for about 50 vehicles.
Louis Pasteur, known as the “father of fermentation” is featured in both Southern Strain locations. Murals painted by Southern Tiger Collective. Photo: Laura Barrero/Axios

On tap: None of Southern Strain beers will be brewed at the Plaza Midwood space, but the brewery will carry at least 17 beers on tap.

  • New beers come out every three weeks. “We try to keep it fresh,” Allen told Axios this week.
  • It’ll have a variety of styles of beer, including a number of light, fruity options. Pro tip: Try the Strawberry Lunch, a seasonal fruit lager, and the Cherrymosa.
  • There’s no food menu, but expect regular pop-ups from food trucks like Hot Box Kitchen, the street food concept owned by Michael Bowling, which has a permanent location inside Southern Strain’s Concord brewery.
Food trucks like Hot Box will have pop-ups at Southern Strain’s new location. Photo: Emma Way/Axios

Hours: Monday through Thursday from 3pm to 10pm, Fridays from 3pm-11pm, Saturdays from noon to 11pm, and Sundays from 10am-9pm.

southern strain 2
New beers will be released every three weeks. Photo: Laura Barrero/Axios

Background: Founded by Allen, Bart Roberts and Ford Craven in 2019, Southern Strain only opened a few months before the pandemic. The former Cannon Mill building has become a community hub for locals in Concord since the brewery opened.

Zoom out: For years, Legion was the sole brewery in Plaza Midwood, but now the neighborhood is poised to become one of Charlotte’s most notable brewery districts with additions of Resident Culture, Pilot, Burial (retail sales for now, taproom coming soon), and now Southern Strain.

[Related Axios guide: The 5 best brewery crawls in Charlotte, ranked]

Strawberry Lunch fruit lager. Photo: Emma Way/Axios

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