"Hey, you look like you could use a cool one!"
From the basement to the block, Light the Lamp Brewery has a new home in a downtown Grayslake storefront where patrons can taste and take home a variety of hockey-inspired microbrews.
The grand opening will be held at 2:30 p.m. to midnight Saturday, Dec. 1, at Lake Center Place at 10 N. Lake St., Suite 107. Sunday hours will be noon to 10 p.m. Regular hours will be announced Monday.
Store capacity is just 49 people, so on opening day patrons may want to call ahead at (847) 752-8489 to make sure there isn't a line out the door!
"We're very excited. It's been a long time coming. We've been doing this at home for years," said Don Chatten, who co-owns the "nano-brewery" with friends Bill Hernes, Jeff Sheppard, Dave Cavanaugh and Kurt Engdahl.
The concept for Light the Lamp came after Chatten and his friends traveled to Helsinki, Finland, in 2009 to watch the Chicago Blackhawks, who took home the Stanley Cup. They even had a drink with "Coach Q," Joel Quenneville.
The business was incorporated in 2010, with production starting in 2011. The friends, hockey dads whose kids played together, began making microbrews at home and holding tastings at local events around town.
They soon grew a following of fans who've been anxiously awaiting the bricks and mortar brewery. The business got village approval for a license this fall.
"We're thrilled the way the village has received us," said Chatten.
The decor at Light the Lamp is, what else, hockey-themed, with jerseys, photos and other memorabilia on the walls. Even the beer taps are fashioned out of hockey sticks. And the place wouldn't be complete without a red light, which references the light that goes on when a team scores a goal.
Known as a "nano-brewery" because they brew in small batches — 30 gallons in a two-barrel system, Light the Lamp will feature about six microbrews on any given day, from "Bench Minor Blonde" to "Red Line Ale." There will also be seasonal brews and weekly specials.
At the small wood bar, patrons can taste test 6 ounce sample glasses or take home a half-growler, about four pints, for $20. The glass growler can be brought back for a discounted refill. Eventually, they will sell kegs and hope to find local distribution.
Light the Lamp also has logo merchandise like hoodies and hats for sale. What they don't sell is food, but patrons are welcome to bring some in from outside vendors.
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