Strathcona has gone through its ups and downs. However, the common theme throughout its history is the rich sense of entrepreneurship that the area possesses.
Tim Knight, the president of the new brewery – Strathcona Beer Co. – is an embodiment of this famous Strathcona trait. Moving into Strathcona in 2002, Tim found himself spending countless hours on the front steps of his porch. It was from this “stoop” that he found himself drinking beer, meeting neighbours, dreaming up ideas and ultimately starting a family.
Surprisingly, the idea for the brewery did not come from this stoop, but instead came to him when he was on a surfing trip in Tofino, visiting his good friend Bryan O’Malley. Bryan happens to also be one of the founders of the Tofino Brewing Co., a BC craft beer institution. Inspired by the Tofino brewery and always on the hunt for new business concepts, Tim met with some of his old friends, Adrian McInnes and Michael “Fezz” Nazarec. It just so happened that Fezz had been a passionate homebrewer for the past 30 years and was ready to have a shot in the big leagues, working a full scale brewery.
The team knew from the get-go that Strathcona was the natural fit for the brewery.
They all have their roots in the neighbourhood and they strongly believe there is no place that can replicate Strathcona’s sense of community and diversity. Tim also believes there is a lot of upside for the community that he calls home. The area used to lack some of the usual amenities for a community and Tim is “happy to see places opening up where you can hang with your neighbours, family and friends.”
Despite being fairly new on the scene, Strathcona Beer Co. has already had a positive impact on the neighbourhood. With some of the best pizza in town and a rotating local art piece, the brewery has become a hub for the community – maybe not replacing – but certainly supplementing the classic Strathcona stoop.
Next time you are in Strathcona, stop by 895 East Hastings and sip down a cold Strathcona Gold Belgian Ale. We promise it will be the best forty you ever drank.