The Linen District is about to become Downtown Boise’s one-stop spot for bottled alcohol.
Hops & Bottles, a craft bottle shop and beer bar, plans to open by April at 1420 W. Grove St. It will be across the street from an Idaho State Liquor Store at 1419 W. Grove St. — albeit not directly.
Hops & Bottles will take up the rear of the former Alloway Commercial Lighting space on 15th Street. It’s a garage-door-fronted section that was used for parts and storage. (When I stopped by last week, I took photos of the wrong side of the building — the Grove Street front next to Big City Coffee & Cafe.) Hops & Bottles will face the east side of the Spearmint Rhino Gentlemen’s Club, and be next to an alley bordering the rear of the Idaho Youth Ranch.
The bottle shop will have a large, 14-door cooler section packed with at least 300 different varieties of beer, owner Mark Sieber says. Customers can drink them on the spot or buy beer to go. Twenty-four rotating taps will serve sit-down patrons at eight bar stools and about half a dozen tables. In the summer, Hops & Bottles will have outdoor patio seating.
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Sieber, who recently returned to Boise after living in Seattle for nine years, saw opportunity here for a bottle shop.
“These things are just on fire in the Seattle market and Portland, as well,” he says.
Sieber doesn’t think there’s any business advantage to being a stone’s throw from a liquor store — “Two different types of people, really,” he says — but is excited about the Linen District. He’s hoping Hops & Bottles can draw customers frequenting nearby establishments.
“We’re going to hopefully feed off Big City a little bit,” he says, “because they’re always so packed on the weekends. We’re not going to have food, but we’re going to allow people to bring food in. We’ll have local wines and champagne as well. We’ll do specials on the weekend like mimosas and stuff like that.”
Sieber knows that craft beer fans in Downtown Boise have options, whether it’s nearby grocers such as the Boise Co-op or Whole Foods, or more-distant bottled-beer destinations such as Bier:Thirty or Brewer’s Haven.
But he loves the location of the Linen District, which he thinks will blossom in the next three to five years.
“We wanted something where we can just focus on that Downtown core,” Sieber says. “The traffic from 25- to 45-year-old business people and young executives. You can go to the Co-op, you can go to Whole Foods and get decent beers, but can’t go to one place and get all the beers.
“We want to bring everything from national to international to regional and local good beers around here,” he adds. “A big part of it with us is to educate the consumer, as well, when they come in.”
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