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Faircraft BrauHaus stalled by COVID-19, still moving forward 

Whether it was a concert, a vacation, the basketball season, or any other number of things, we’ve all seen events we awaited with excitement come to a halt as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak.

For me, it was the opening of Faircraft BrauHaus in Fairport. The German-style brewpub is located on Parce Avenue in Fairport, in the same industrial strip as Iron Smoke Whiskey and Triphammer Bierwerks. Its outdoor beer garden and focus on a mix of traditional lagers had my beer nerd senses tingling.
Faircraft was set to open on May 9. But the coronavirus had other plans, and that opening has since been postponed indefinitely.

Owner Matt West assured me the brewery was still very much alive and will be well worth the wait. “You can always come and experience a couple classics, like an American IPA or some sort of ale, then have the classic European styles, the lagers, stouts, the helles,” West said.

click to enlarge Faircraft BrauHaus's planned May 9 opening has been delayed by the coronavirus pandemic. - PHOTO BY GINO FANELLI
  • PHOTO BY GINO FANELLI
  • Faircraft BrauHaus's planned May 9 opening has been delayed by the coronavirus pandemic.
The brewing at Faircraft is to be headed by Steve Landgren, formerly of the Genesee Pilot Brewery and a co-founder of the Fairport brewery.

Landgren has won medals for his homebrews. In February, his weizenbock took third place at the Garden State Homebrew competition, and his American IPA took third place at the Upstate New York Homebrewers Association competition in 2018. Landgren’s Schwarzbier has also won best in show at Kings County Brewers Collective’s annual NYC homebrew competition, which has since been canned by the brewery as Morbid Hour.

“He’s won all sorts of awards and gotten a lot of recognition,” West said.

Landgren will be brewing on a modest 3.5 barrel brewhouse at Faircraft when production begins. West emphasized that small batch production and a healthy stockpile of nine fermenters will ensure Faircraft has a healthy supply of mainstays and experiments in constant rotation. Faircraft plans to feature nine to 12 beers on tap.

“We can do lots of small batches that are on for how long they last and then move onto the next one,” West said. “There will always be dependables on the classic styles, and there will always be the new stuff.”

Like most things in the current climate, when Faircraft will open is up in the air. West is considering options for a soft opening as a takeout joint while breweries and restaurants are barred from operating as usual, pending licensing.

“We will catch up after this,” West said. “It’s unfortunate, but after every downswing there is an upswing. The brewing scene is really a great community, it’s very collaborative, it’s been very supportive of us.”

Gino Fanelli is a CITY staff writer. He can be reached at gfanelli@rochester-citynews.com.

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