Don’t be fooled by the open, echoing space of Solace Brewing Company. The craft brews are stellar and the atmosphere is warm and inviting.
And what is all that space for? Change.
There is a tip jar with the saying: If you fear change, leave it here.
That about sums it up when you consider the lofty endeavor of the three owners, Mike Arms, Jon Humerick, and Drew Wiles. They not only started their own brewery, they’re ahead of the curve, already involved with production and distribution.
Solace boasts a 20-barrel system, four 40-barrel fermenters, and is fully stocked with half kegs and sixtels (also available for walk-in consumer purchase.)
This tells me one thing about the owners. They’re not only people that don’t fear change: They live for it. And these fellas are making people happy while they’re at it.
Their head brewer, Drew Wiles (called Wiley) insists on nothing but perfection in the brewing process. I can personally attest to the fact that his process is reaping great results.
Is it his Bachelor of Science in Cell and Molecular Biology or his work as a Genetic Medicine Research Scientist for over 5 years? Perhaps it’s the time he spent at Paradise Springs Winery (founded by his family) or his time at Beltway Brewing Company rising to production manager?
That may have to remain a mystery while we discuss more important matters: their top-notch beer.
I started out with their Suns Out, Hops Out, Session IPA, carrying a nice citrus bite for IPA lovers. My husband, Matt, founder of Brewdoun, enjoyed their Brown Bomber. The brown ale was smooth with a hoppy bite to it, striking just the right note. Our personal favorite was Patiently Waiting, created with Ocelot Brewing Company, an India Pale Lager. The craft brew manages that classic lager flavor with enough distinct hops; one will keep coming back for more. Matt ended with Serenity Now, another IPA that rivaled for number one on our list.
Wait…How will I ever get seconds on all these beers I love? No problem. I’ll just steal the beverage from my husband. I simply explained I needed serenity, now. Being the gem of a spouse he is, he relinquished the drink.
I’ll have to go back for Beach Bod, their Watermelon Summer Ale (so I can look smokin’ in my mom-kini) and 2 Legit 2 Wit, a Belgian Wit.
I would encourage folks to stop by Solace and take in the open space (if it’s not filled with warm bodies enjoying craft brews!)
While there, one might consider what room can be proverbially made for a new endeavor in life. Maybe it will simply be taking a beer tour this summer. Or, perhaps, it will be a life change. Either way a cold beer at their brewery is a nice place to contemplate such things.
As one exits, I suggest putting a tip in the jar, paying homage in a sense, to the solace found at the establishment.
**A special thank you to Mike Arms for answering our questions on opening night!
Mike Arms: Co-Founder, Director of Finance
Jon Humerick: Co-Founder, Director of Operations
Drew Wiles: Co-Founder, Head Brewer
42615 Trade W Dr #100,
Sterling, VA 20166