Some of the best burgers in St. Louis are headed to Cherokee Street.
Mac’s Local Eats, which currently operates a walk-up window inside Dogtown staple Tamm Avenue Bar, plans to open a location inside the brand-new Bluewood Brewing.
Before opening Mac's Local Eats inside Tamm in early 2017, Chris "Mac" McKenzie was already known in the industry for his CSA, Mac's Local Buys, which now operates a retail outpost next door to Mac's selling local bread, produce, grass-fed beef, pasta and more. That commitment to local sourcing also drives the menu at Mac's, which serves smashed burgers made with high-quality local beef and the famous Rip Fries, which are dusted in Red Hot Riplets seasoning. McKenzie says the new location will serve a similar menu to the original Mac's but with a few modifications.
"It will be under the same umbrella; we'll be using whole hogs and whole cows," he says. "But we're definitely going to have a different menu at Bluewood."
St. Louis' newest brewery will specialize in barrel-aging and mixed fermentation.
Bluewood Brewing co-owners Cameron Lund and Grant Lodholz are both longtime homebrewers and were searching for a food component to add to the brewery. At their Cherokee Street taproom, which was originally home to the Lemp Brewery Stables, they plan to offer a diverse lineup of beers with a focus on barrel-aged (including high-gravity stouts) and mixed-fermentation beers.
"The space is off the charts awesome," McKenzie says. "It's like no other taproom in St. Louis. It's hard to describe...there's a fireplace, a really cool patio and a 15-foot-tall chandelier hanging above the bar. At the end of the day, it was the relationship we developed with Bluewood; everybody plays nice in the sandbox and is loving working together."
The brewery has held several soft openings over the past few weeks, but plans to install a larger brewhouse in the coming weeks. To that end, expect to see a grand opening for both Bluewood and the new outpost of Mac's Local Eats later this summer.
Editor's Note: This post was updated to include additional quotes from Chris McKenzie.
Bluewood Brewing and Mac's Local Eats, 1821 Cherokee St., Cherokee Business District, St. Louis, Missouri, bluewoodbrewing.com