Benny Boy Brewing, Lincoln Heights forthcoming brewery with outdoor fire pits, beer, and cider, should open this September. That’s if everything goes to plan with construction, permits, and the still present coronavirus pandemic.
It’s been a long road for co-owners Chelsey Rosetter and Benjamin Farber, who started moving forward with Benny Boy in 2018. The partners received notice for a permit hearing on Saint Patrick’s Day 2020, shortly before city hall shut down temporarily in the early days of the pandemic. Developer Ventana Ventures took possession of the property last week, where all three parties will now prepare for construction on the east side of the 5 Freeway just south of Main Street on Daly.
Even before the pandemic, Benny Boy Brewing made plans for outdoor fire pits and an indoor/outdoor drinking area. One building will house a brewery, the other a cidery — and both will have tasting rooms. Benny Boy will also hold the distinction as one of the only cideries in Southern California, joining 101 Cider House in Chinatown and Long Beach’s Ficklewood Ciderworks.
As one of LA’s oldest neighborhoods, Lincoln Heights used to be flush with vineyards. It’s also walking distance from San Antonio Winery, and near the Brewery Artist Lofts. The lofts used to be, among other things, a Pabst Blue Ribbon brewery. That building’s restaurant and bar, Barbara’s, closed last year.
Real estate developer and managing partner of Ventana Ventures, Diego Torres-Palma has high hopes for the project. “Had we opened in 2020, this would’ve been the 40 year anniversary of Pabst Blue Ribbon closing which is right across the street from our property,” says Torres-Palma. “It’s literally on the other side of the 5 [Freeway]. I like the notion that the area where [PBR] used to make beer, and the whole area used to be winemakers is kind of having a revival. We’re playing a small part of bringing it back to where it used to be.”