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Groundbreaking ceremony held for Steel Hands Brewing Company’s facility in Cayce

Production brewery located at 2350 Foreman Street slated for Fall 2018 opening

Cayce, SC (James Bowers) - The craft beer industry is in the midst of a huge renaissance in the US, and as of today, Cayce has become a part of the party. Steel Hands Brewing Company joined Cayce leaders today to make the relationship official. The City of Cayce held a groundbreaking ceremony for Steel Hands. Mayor Elise Parton and a host of other community members were on hand to get to work on the brewery.

Steel Hands is the brainchild of Daryl Frick, Scott Lambert, and Brooks Smarr. The men were excited by the booming beer industry and noticed a low population of beermakers in Columbia when compared to similar Southern cities. The name is an homage to the “hard working people” of the Columbia area. It also pays homage to the neighboring CMC Steel Plant which is situated behind the brewery’s Foreman Street site.

The facility will be one of the largest production breweries in central South Carolina. When completed, it will be 10,000 square feet on a parcel of four acres. Steel Hands will boast a 30 barrel brewhouse with six 60 barrel fermenters. The facility will have the capacity to produce 10,000 barrels per year. Scott Lambert says that the large facility will give Steel Hands the ability to produce beer of a high quantity, adding that the industrial environment of the Foreman Street site was a natural fit for a brewery of this capacity. The facility will also benefit from its proximity to Interstates 77 and 26, making distribution to merchants easier. The company will work with local distributors to get its beers into area restaurants, bars, and retail settings such as grocery stores and specialty beverage outlets.

Plans for the brewery include an on the premises 150 seat, 2,500 square foot taproom-style restaurant. It will feature Steel Hands beers and a variety of beer-infused entrees will be served. This taproom can be used for business, community, and social functions. Tours of the facility will also be given. There are also plans to hold events and festivals featuring local musicians at the facility.

The production will be overseen by Brewmaster Mark Walters. The Buffalo, New York native is a 22-year veteran of the industry who most recently worked at the Abita brewery in New Orleans, Louisiana before coming to Columbia. Walters will bring a high level of consistency and efficiency to Steel Hands’ operation. He already has several recipes for beers that he hopes to utilize with Steel Hands.

While Steel Hands is not yet ready to reveal specific styles and brands, Lambert says that the goal is to create a variety of “drinkable beers” that every beer lover can enjoy. “A lot of other breweries try to get too far off the grid with strange beers,” Lambert said. “We aim to work with our distributor to determine the beers people will like and those will be the products we release initially.” Lambert adds that Steel Hands will produce several styles that should include something most beer drinkers will enjoy.

The brewery is projected to open in late September 2018. Parton expressed her excitement for Steel Hands’ arrival in the community, which is already home to major operations like Amazon, SCE&G, and Nephron Pharmaceuticals. “To have a place where people can come and gather and enjoy great food and great beer is a nice thing.” Partin noted that the site was formerly home to the World-Wide Recycling facility, which burned for three days in 2011. She expressed her enjoyment at seeing “new life” on the property.

Steel Hands Brewing Company is expected to add 30-40 jobs over a five-year period. The plan is to focus on the Columbia market initially, and add new territories in the state and region over time. For more information on Steel Hands Brewing Company, visit steelhandsbrewing.com. For other happenings and information for the City of Cayce, visit caycesc.gov.

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