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Great Falls Brews News

Learn what’s brewing at Great Falls Brewing Company

GRAND OPENING! DECEMBER 15th at 12:00 pm

Hello Loyal Friends, Followers, and Family of Great Falls Brewing Company! First, I would like to say how much it has meant to us for you to stick by us all these months (years?). Your support has certainly given us the strength to finish the work. We couldn’t be more excited to say that we have finally come to the end of the construction part of the company (well, mostly…). And we are happy to announce the Great Falls Brewing Company’s

Soft Opening Events

The week of festivities will kick off with a mad dash to decorate and fine-tune our utilities and staff. The following will be invite-only private events, but if you are members of these groups/communities, please spread the word. These events will include catered food and the first pint/flight is free. Thank you for supporting and helping us!

  • Wed, Dec. 12th - Family, Friends, Mug Club, and Trades Night.

  • Thu, Dec. 13th - CTBeer ticketed event. Look for news to obtain tickets.

  • Fri, Dec. 14th - Canaan Community Night.

Read more in our November 2018 Newsletter

Sean Hannan
Construction is Under Way!

After a long winter, the Connecticut Railroad Historical Association was able to finish up main construction work inside the Depot in March. We’ve since taken over the eastern portion of the building and begun our buildout. PK Building & Remodeling is leading the outfitting of the building, coordinating the movement of the tanks into the building, overseeing the floors, electrical, and plumbing to ensure the work is done in a professional and timely manner. Greg Karcheski, who will be leading the charge for PK’s, is from Canaan and has a real interest in seeing the Depot work finished and in beer being poured this year! 

Read this and more in our July issue of Great Falls Brews News here

Chris Tripler
Our New Head Brewer

GFBC is proud to announce the hiring of Matt Bergfield as the Head Brewer and Director of Brewing Operations. A graduate of Boston College, Matt has had a distinguished career in the brewing industry from Harpoon in Boston to McMenamins in Oregon. Matt will lead our brewing team in creating winning beers for all in the region to enjoy. Please welcome our newest member of the team!

Chris Tripler
Brewery Progress Update

The town has made great progress over the summer on bringing the Depot back to life. We’ve been working on the design of the bar area, brew space, cold storage and private event room, and they are really coming together. The outside of the building has been spectacularly painted and the deck space will be the happening place to meet up with friends next spring, summer, and fall! We are working with our designer and, with any luck, we’ll have our sign up to announce our formal moving in.  Our brewing equipment is ordered and is being made as we write. We can’t wait to see it all come together!

While we have made significant progress, we’ve come to realize that our plan of opening this winter will take a little more time than we anticipated.  While the renovations look great, they will take just a little longer than we originally expected. Add to that some time for permits, time to deliver the brewing system, and making sure we don’t get snowed out and you can see how days start to add up. Who knew ordering and setting up a system that can produce about 26,000 pints of beer per year would be so complicated?!? Once we’ve completed our renovations, set up our brewing system and hired our staff, we will spend 4-6 weeks building up our beer supply before we open – then we’ll be ready for NW Connecticut, North Canaan, and you!

Our new target is to open the brewery in May. We feel that this is better for us as a business, and for our customers so that we can ensure we are 110% ready to serve you the best beer you have ever tasted. At our first official company meeting we decided our mission statement was simple: Great Beer! While we have seen some setbacks in our plans, we are more excited than ever to make this dream a reality and we can't wait to share all of our heard work with on our opening day.


Christopher Tripler

Chris Tripler
Chris Tripler is on track to open Great Falls Brewery in North Canaan’s newly restored Union Station — he hopes by December.

NORTH CANAAN — You could sense the anticipation in Chris Tripler as he stood amid the renovations progressing at the historic Canaan Union Station railroad depot. He’s getting ready to launch a new business venture, Great Falls Brewing Company, as an integral part of the rebirth of the Depot, which was severely damaged by arson in 2001.
“We are going through the permitting stages right now for the brewery and the pub, and when those are complete andif the Depot work goes according to plan we can have a soft opening in December and a full opening in January of next year,” said Tripler, who lives in Beverly, Mass., but is searching for a home with his family in the Northwest Corner.
Tripler, 49, a member of the teaching staff at Endicott College, began home brewing in 1993 and has been doing it “on and off” for 24 years. He views launching Great Falls Brewing Company as turning a page in his life (with a nod to the past: The business is named after the Great Falls in Falls Village, where he and his wife, Margaret Banker, were married).
His vision for the brewery encompasses much more than just making great beer.
“We all need a place to go, a meeting place where people can come together and get away from the worries and pressure of everyday life and have fun and good conversation.”
Tripler lived in Falls Village from late 2002 to the summer of 2005. He’s been mostly a Connecticut resident, with stops in southern California, Idaho, Kentucky and nearby Millbrook. He teaches in The Hotchkiss School’s summer-long Portals program, working with second- and third-year students on advanced field biology techniques.
Tripler is the managing member of theownership group of the brewery; there are several other partners. Their plan is to brew beer in large vats at the Depot and sell it to customers in a café-like setting.
“We plan on initially having between eight and 10 types, including New England IPAs, stouts, porters and light lagers, on tap and we hope to add to that with seasonal brews.
“We also plan on having some themed merchandise and on partnering with vendors to bring in foods that customers can enjoy while they sip their beer. We hope to sell 32-ounce sealed cans for take-home and would like to get some of our product into other retail outlets.”
There will be other beverage options for visitors who don’t drink beer. Tripler believes that many of his customers will be people who have come to the Depot to see the railroad museum or who are in North Canaan for town-wide events such as the annual Railroad Days summer celebration.
“We’ve received lots of encouragement from other businesses, the townspeople and local officials. We want to be a part of the community and reach out to the area, not just be people doing business here.
“We’re very excited to be opening in the Depot and we hope to be a place where entire families can come and enjoy time together and with others in a beautiful and historic setting.”

Photo by John Torsiello

Photo by John Torsiello

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