BATAVIA – Almost any young hipster or aging hippie can tell you about microbrews. How about nanobrews?
These are even smaller craft brewing operations that are turning out exceedingly modest amounts of beer for local consumption.
Energy City Brewing in Batavia is designed to be such an operation, producing kegs for local bars and restaurants, and limited bottling runs for beer connoisseurs.
Batavia couple David and Heidi Files have rented a commercial space at 2 1/2 W. Wilson St., Suite A1, and are well on their way to getting all the necessary city permits.
The location, which is accessible only from the rear of the building, would not be a tavern or even a taproom, the pair said, although there likely would be tastings when new beers are released.
David Files said Energy City Brewing initially would produce one barrel, or 31 gallons a week, in the 1,700-square-foot space.
The couple is enthusiastic about living in Batavia and the prospect of attracting business from out of town.
“People will seek good beer from far away,” Heidi Files said.
The two seem to epitomize the new wave of young professional couples making their home in Batavia. He is a technician working to produce ethanol at a plant in Rochelle. She is a transportation planner for Kane County.
They compared the venture to putting money into a hobby instead of into a luxury like a sports car.
David Files has won awards for his brewing, and describes their plans for Energy City Brewing as a “boutique production brewery.” It will produce both ales and lagers, he said.
The Batavia City Council’s Committee of the Whole recently approved the creation of a new liquor license classification to accommodate nanobrewery operations. Approval by the full council is expected.