A trio of Grain Valley High School graduates have teamed up to bring their love of craft brews to downtown Grain Valley.
Brothers Brian and Jason Fenstermaker and friend Ben Call have purchased and are rehabbing the historic building at 508 N. Main to transform into Iron Kettle Brewing.
The group had discussed opening a brewery together for 6-7 years, getting close to taking the plunge a few years ago. Plans were derailed after Jason Fenstermaker’s home was damaged in the tornado that tore through the area in 2017.
The Fenstermaker brothers lost their mother Jo in December, and decided to use the life insurance legacy she left them to fulfill their dream.
“She loved anything we did together. She didn’t have much, but she left us a life insurance policy. I called my brother and asked if he had plans for his share of the money, and he said ‘No”, so we said, ‘Let’s do it. Let’s open our dream up,” Jason said.
Jason spotted the “For Sale” sign on the building on Main, and the rest, as they say, is history.
The love of history and the brothers’ Scottish heritage plays an important role in the planned brewery’s name and theme.
“My grandmother was born and raised in Scotland, and came here as a war bride after World War II. We’ve always had our Scottish heritage that we’ve loved, and we’ve always been into medieval history,” Fenstermaker said.
“Our intention is to have people feel as if they have stepped into the a old world pub, a comfortable public house where the entire family is welcome.”
With two educators as a part of the group, elements to educate and entertain younger visitors are in the works.
“We all have families. We want this to be a part of our family, and we want other families to come here and enjoy.”
After weeks of tearing out plaster walls and drop ceilings, the work of transforming the space and completing permits and licensing begins.
We’re hoping for a mid-September opening,” Fenstermaker said.
In addition to craft brews, a full bar with an extensive whiskey selection is planned. Food offerings will focus on small-plate gourmet dishes, designed to pair well with brews. A small stage area on the main level, upstairs banquet space, and open rooftop patio space will add entertainment and event options.
A shared alley with the Grain Valley Historical Society is set to be transformed into an outdoor patio, providing another space for guests to enjoy food and drink with friends and family.
Iron Kettle Brewing will share updates on their opening plans on their Facebook page (@IronKettleBrewing).