Not only is Metazoa somewhat close to where I live (well, at least it's on the right side of town), it's also just a block away from my one of my favorite Indy dining spots, the Milano Inn. It just seemed like the stars were lining up for me to check it out on opening day.
I expected there to be a good amount of people there, but since I'd never attended a brewery's grand opening before, I wasn't sure just how big of a crowd there'd be. What I witnessed told me just how huge the local craft brewing industry has become in Indianapolis.
Against my better instincts -- which were to get there before the end of the work day (Metazoa opened at 11 a.m.), I got there around 5:30 p.m. And that was a good half-hour before the official opening "party" was scheduled to begin. It was packed already, as these photos should affirm.
I like the layout of Metazoa -- on a normal business day, I'm sure there will be ample room to accommodate visitors indoors in the open industrial type facility ... as well as generous outdoor seating space. There also appears to be ample parking space to handle traffic on a normal business day in a lot just north of the building. On this day, however, overflow visitors were parking along Georgia Street at least two blocks east of the brewery. I was one of those.
The crowd around the bar, which appear to be the only way to get beverages, was always at least three people deep, and I decided to file in a line on one end of the bar where -- because it was a formed line -- I presumed it was intended for folks simply wishing to pick up brews and head back to a table or to exit.
I stood in that line for at least 20 minutes and barely moved. While there, a staffer carrying a tray with tiny samples of Metazoa's Kinkajou honey weiss beer stopped by, and I grabbed one. I first "discovered" honey beer in the mid-1990s. Honey Brown was on tap at an Applebee's on the Westside of Indy where I had stopped one very hot and humid July early evening. I thought that first Honey Brown was divine, and I'm sure I had a second that day.
Oddly, I haven't drunk honey brews very much since, but I have sampled honey weiss drafts at a couple local craft breweries and recently drank a bottled honey weiss import -- none of which I really liked. Unfortunately, I didn't care much for the Kinkajou, either.
Perhaps my taste buds truly have evolved. As I mentioned in Monday's post, I've really developed a liking for the local microbrew offerings to the point that, for the past couple years, I have rarely imbibed mainstream brews. Hence, I was eager to try Metazoa's other house brews Friday. Alas, that'll have to wait for another day. Fortunately, at least for now, Metazoa has hours of operation that are easy to remember -- 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. every day.
Not long after sampling the Kinkajou, and having not advanced another step in the aforementioned line, I left and returned home, first stopping at Fountain Square Brewery to fill my growler, which I had hoped to do at Metazoa.
A sidebar note about the brewery: Metazoa is a word with Latin and Greek origins that describes a classification of animals that have tissues and organs. As reported in an article in the weekly Nuvo publication in Indianapolis, Metazoa President Dave Worthington has supported various charitable wildlife endeavors through the years, but he didn't have the financial means to give as much as he'd like ... until now. Metazoa plans to donate 5 percent of all profits to animal and wildlife organizations, including the Indianapolis Humane Society. For the full list of organizations that will receive Metazoa's support, check out this link.
You can find Metazoa on Facebook, Twitter (@MetazoaBrewing) and Instagram (@metazoabrewing).
Photo geek stuff: Everything was shot with my iPhone 6s Plus in normal photo mode. I did crops and addressed minor exposure and shadow issues in Photoshop Elements 13.
The bar area at Metazoa (above) and its multiple taps positioned below the brew menu. Next two below, a closeup of the menu in the photo above and a photo of the growler lineup, which appears above one of two end sections of the bar.
The line I would eventually stand in appears above at the end of the bar farthest from the door. The guy in the orange and gray shirt appears to be at the front of that line. A view toward the bar from the actual line, once I got it in, appears below. The line was alongside a fence that closed in the brewery's fermentation tanks, shown in the two photos after the one below.
One of the outdoor seating areas, near the main entrance on the north side of the building, gives visitors a nice view of downtown and of a portion of the parking lot (above). The view looks northwest. Below is another shot of the same seating area, where you see more of the parking lot as well as a barbecue food truck.
Above: Another, smaller fenced-in outdoor seating area faces College Avenue. At right is one the Pierogi food truck on hand for the opening.