By Susan Latiolait for Eugene Daily News
Due to a nightly overcrowd, Eugene’s beloved exotic beer carrier and restaurant, The Bier Stein, is looking to expand their space by relocating to the old Midtown building on 1591 Willamette St.
The move, transpiring between February and March, will offer more food, more beer, and more entertainment than their current location on 345 East 11th Ave.
First opening in Eugene in July of 2005, their current location offered a good potential customer base, targeting downtown professionals and university students. However, their ever-growing popularity has led to longer waiting lines and deficient seating options.
“We need a much larger space here. We are crowded so many nights out of the week,” said The Bier Stein owner Chip Hardy. “This new location will allow us to seat more people and have a larger beer cooler, more draft offerings.”
Upgrading from a current 2,100 square foot space to a 12,000 square foot space, the Willamette St. location offers exciting new possibilities for both Hardy and Eugene residents. With three times more space, there will be additions to nearly all aspects of the company.
“Currently we have a 10-door cooler and we are expanding it to an 18-door cooler. Right now we have 12 draft offerings and that will expand to 31. We will have a much larger kitchen space so we will be able to expand our menu as well,” says Hardy.
Along with updated space and service, the Willamette location will also give customers a new ambiance that the current location lacks. According to Hardy, the old Midtown building already has a European vibe throughout with a fireplace and European style street lamps. Adding to The Bier Stein’s current beer-themed decorations will be a billiard table and a rectangular bar in the center that will help to create a large communal beer space. The Bier Stein will, consequently, have a more relaxed and unique atmosphere.
With some nights at The Bier Stein currently having to be a standing room only setting due to the crowd, this new space and atmosphere will offer customers a calmer environment, along with increased revenue for the business. For those concerned about the move, it is one done so that the business can still keep their faithful customers.
“We still will have the central location. It is on Willamette Street so it will catch people on their way home and it is still close to university so we still capture that target market,” says owner Kristina Measells.
Along with the new location, The Bier Stein is excited about future business plans. They soon hope to launch a website where they can start selling their beer online. With many states around the country unable to access Northwest beer, the new website would allow The Bier Stein to ship beer to 37 states around the country.
Recently awarded Best Beer Bottle Selection on the West Coast by Beer West Magazine, The Bier Stein is excited for their future business and their place in Eugene and around the country.
“We know where our flaws are so we are just excited to redo The Bier Stein. We want it to be one of the best beer bars on the West Coast, if not the United States,” says Hardy. “We know we have a great business model and now we are trying to take it to the next level.”