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Lawrence George Brings Craft Brewing to Turners Falls, MA

lawrence george portrait brick and feather

Peter and Rich met up with Lawrence George recently – the man bringing craft beer in the form of the Brick and Feather Brewery to the Franklin County town of Turners Falls, Massachusetts. George is taking over a 6ooo square foot space from the former Alpha Stone shop at 78 11th Street, right next to the power canal bridge. He’s putting in a seven-barrel brewhouse and plans a tasting room and retail front on the street where visitors can purchase and refill growlers; he’ll be looking to have Brick and Feather  available to the public through local draft accounts as well. Building on one of craft brewing’s strongest attractions, his aim is to play a part as a “local” – a British term for the neighborhood pub brewery – providing hand-crafted libations to the townspeople and the legion of travelling beer fans.

lawrence george brewery gazette

Lawrence George in front of the future home of Brick and Feather Brewery at 78 11th Street, Turners Falls, MA (photo from Daily Hampshire Gazette)

Lawrence George is no stranger to brewing; he’s learned his trade and paid his dues at a number of fermentation gigs. He’s a graduate of the American Brewer’s Guild at Drop-In Brewing in Middlebury, Vermont, and he’s worked the kettle on both the east and west coasts, most recently at Deerfield, MA’s Berkshire Brewing Company. He says that he doesn’t have preconceived notions as to what Brick and Feather’s offerings will be – it’s going to be an ongoing process, with local taste factoring into the recipe – but he’s going to start with several different ales and see how they shake out. With a production capacity of a little over 200 gallons per batch, the tanks should turn over quickly and there will be something new in the tun often.

11th ave canal bridge turners falls ma

The landmark 11th Street bridge over the power canal is right next door, tribute to Turners Falls industrial past.

Turner’s Falls, an erstwhile industrial town that is steadily finding its way back on to the traveller’s map, is rebuilding its red-brick civic architecture and repurposing its mills, tenements, and commercial blocks. The new brewery, to be open later this year, will fit right in to the restaurants and eateries cropping up here and there, such as the now-venerable Rendezvous (the ‘Vous, to those in the know) at 78 Third Street and Great Falls Harvest, with a farm-to-fork focus and also on Third Street. Appropriately enough, we met with the brewer/entrepreneur at the Five-Eyed Fox, a comfy and busy new spot on the canal end of Third Street at No. 37. The Fox is a local-centric cafe, with a brief but delightfully delicious beer menu; we enjoyed superb choices from Ballast Point, Maine Beer Co.,  The Bruery, and Jack’s Abby. All in all, the new craft brewery should fit right in to the fresh mix in this old town. And, oh: we asked about the name Brick and Feather. Lawrence said it was his girlfriend’s inspiration – and if you think about it for a minute, it fits quite well. Cheers!

five eyed fox taps turners falls ma

 The taps at Five Eyed Fox are a lovely sight to see (@austindesigninc on Instagram)

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