23 Apr Big Woods Brewing to Open One-of-a-Kind Restaurant in Downtown Speedway
From it’s humble origins in the rustic setting of Brown County to its state-wide explosion after the opening of their Bloomington location, Nashville Indiana’s Big Woods Brewing (parent company for the popular Quaff On! brand) is announcing a major expansion with the opening of a new location in Speedway. For Big Woods’ owner Jeff McCabe, the journey seems almost overwhelming when he puts it into perspective.
“We started six years ago with just the brew pub,” McCabe explains. “We actually brewed one keg at a time for the first few months, and now we have essentially three restaurants: Big Woods Pizza, the brewing company, and Quaff On! in Bloomington…which is going gangbusters, by the way. And on the distribution side, it was a couple years ago we got the brewing system running at the bowling alley, and now we’re distributing through most of the state.” And while the brand will see even more growth with the addition of the Indy location, McCabe fully intends to keep the Nashville operation center to the company’s identity.
“The thing that Nashville does for us, since it’s the number two in-state tourist destination for Indiana residents, is it’s allowed us to build a great ‘fan base,’ something that’s kind of neat and is also something which has helped us with the distribution.” As McCabe explains, the final decision to settle in arguably the most famous part of the Indy area was not one made on a whim.
“We’ve been looking for other locations, and we’ve talked to other municipalities and economic development teams around the state. We landed in Speedway for a couple of reasons. One, as we learn what Speedway has done in terms of bringing new life to the Main Street area…that’s very exciting to us. And number two is the history of the town as the home of the ‘Greatest Spectacle in Motor Racing.’ People from all over the country and the world know about the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the Indy 500. It’s an iconic place, it’s got a great history, it’s very special, and it’s right in the middle of our distribution market.”
“I think it’s a great thing because they make great beer for starters. Also, our experience will focus on the Big Woods theme, so I think we will actually complement each other. We will be creative with our beer list, and I imagine that Daredevil will be on tap at our place.” Once the new location on 10th and Main is completed, McCabe expects it to blend into the Speedway scene while easily reminding all patrons of the company’s more rural origins, primarily with their plans to create a timber-frame entrance similar to their home in Nashville.
“It’s a departure from the other buildings in Speedway,” McCabe said, “but it will complement the city because of their efforts to create a more diverse area around Main Street. We will try to be artful about our efforts to retain our brand and our personality, yet become a part of the Speedway experience as well.
“Our three restaurants are very different from each other in terms of menu because we cater to different populations between Nashville and Bloomington,” McCabe added. “Our plan for Speedway is to bring the best of each of those and converge them there. We believe that the Speedway location will be ideal for meshing all of those different elements. It’s going to be a lot of work, but it’s going to be really exciting.”