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March 7, 2009

A brewing triumph: Pub's debut caps 2-year struggle for founders

Benjamin Franklin once said, "Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy."

And while today's grand opening of Cape Ann Brewing Co.'s Brewpub has left some feeling contrary, for its supporters, and co-founder Jeremy Goldberg, "it's a struggle that's finally come to fruition."

Cape Ann Brewing Co. first tried to open its doors, and its taps, to serve microbrews from its 27 Commercial St. site in May 2007. However, after meeting strong opposition from Fort Square and Beach Court residents, the city Licensing Board decided not to issue a license.

"We thought it was going to happen in May of 2007," said Goldberg, who added that "it wasn't really an option to give up."

A year later, Goldberg and his brother-in-law Michael Beaton, who is co-owner of the Brewing Co., went before the Licensing Board once again. this time for a license to pour beer for four hours a day during three days of Fiesta.

They got it, and Goldberg said, "it was phenomenal."

"The crowd was as diverse as it gets: old, young, all walks of life," Goldberg said. "It was as good as we could have ever expected it to be."

Golberg said that since "Fiesta went off without a hitch," the Brewing Co. decided it was once again time to try for a year-round license to serve. By late January, the Licensing Board approved, and the Brewing Co. received a license in mid-February and held a "soft opening."

"We called it a soft opening; we let our regulars know about us," Goldberg said. "This grand opening is to let everybody know."

Golberg said the grand opening will have raffles, trivia, complimentary chowder from Turner Seafood and chips and salsa from Chili Choice.

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