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Left Field Brewery sets up shop in Leslieville

Posted by Ben Johnson / January 21, 2014

Left Field Brewery TorontoEveryone's favourite baseball-themed Toronto craft-brewers will be opening their own brewery in Leslieville this year. Left Field Brewery, run by husband and wife team Mark and Mandie Murphy, has revealed that as of February 1st, they will be moving into a space at 36 Wagstaff Drive.

The announcement comes roughly one year after Left Field Brewery first arrived on Toronto's brewing scene and, as they told us they would back in March, they've spent the interim looking for the right space to call their own while building their brand and making their beer at larger facilities, contracting space from Grand River Brewing in Cambridge and Barley Days Brewery in Picton.

The site of their future brewery is roughly 100 years-old and was formerly a brick factory, but it has sat vacant for the last three years. Left Field Brewery has taken over 6,000 of the building's 10,000 square feet, giving them enough room for a 20-hectolitre brewing system, a tasting room, some office space and, potentially, the ability to expand operations if the need arises in the future.

The building clearly needs a little care, but the duo seems up to the task.

"It's not pretty," Mark says. "It needs some love," Mandie agrees, before pointing out its thematically appropriate potential. "It's a little rough around the edges, but it kind of has the style of an old ballpark right now."

Left Field BreweryWhile the building sits in what is technically within the boundaries of Leslieville, it's closer to the Danforth than it is to the foot traffic and retail of Queen Street East, sitting roughly one kilometre south of Greenwood Station.

As for timelines, Mark and Mandie are optimistic about getting the doors open as soon as possible. "The brewing equipment, between the time you order it and then it's built and delivered and installed--you can make that happen in six months." Mandie says. The application process for retail sales, though, can take up to a year so their projected doors-open date is sometime in early 2015. In anticipation of these big developments, Left Field Brewery officially doubled their workforce this week: Mandie gave notice at her job and is now also working full time for the brewery, bringing their total staff to two.

As for the beer, they'll likely introduce some more one-offs and experimental offerings when they open the brewery, but the plan is to sell cans of their core brands, Eephus Oatmeal Brown, Maris Pale Ale, and 6-4-3 Double IPA.

In the meantime, they'll be holding an open house on February 22nd so that they can meet the neighbours and people can get a chance to check out the space before construction starts on their brewery, retail space, and tasting room. Food will be provided by Big House Pizza and pints of Left Field beer will be available for just $5.

Left Field BreweryBen Johnson also writes about beer on Ben's Beer Blog. You can follow him on twitter @Ben_T_Johnson

Discussion

15 Comments

swansontvdinner / January 21, 2014 at 09:05 am
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Wow, those two do not look like craft brewery owners! Congrats on the new space and I wish you all the success in the world.
bill / January 21, 2014 at 09:10 am
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Cant wait:)
Steven / January 21, 2014 at 09:17 am
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Wish them the best!
STACK Restaurant / January 21, 2014 at 09:21 am
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HUGE congrats to Mark & Mandie! OK, you've got the brewery now. Next (natural) move, Left Field beers at the Jays games! #CraftBeerDrinkerDreams
Local Yokel / January 21, 2014 at 09:25 am
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Congrats and good luck! Look forward to supporting you! Great for the neighbourhood!
GLEN / January 21, 2014 at 09:26 am
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Can't wait, this is in our backyard!!!! See you at the opening.
Tommy / January 21, 2014 at 09:58 am
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Next Move. Toronto Beer League Baseball Team.

The brewery hats are almost identical to LRG hats, just without the Star.

http://wac.3faa.edgecastcdn.net/803FAA/assets/media/catalog/product/cache/1/image/1000x1000/9df78eab33525d08d6e5fb8d27136e95/0/5/059761.png
Danica / January 21, 2014 at 10:30 am
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Super excited for this! I first sampled their brews at last year's Festival of Beer and they were delicious. Can't wait until I can take those puppies home with me.
Ricky Martin Jr. / January 21, 2014 at 10:39 am
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Are the concoctions available at the LCBO? There's no way in hell I'm dragging my sorry ass all the way to Leslieville.
Ben / January 21, 2014 at 10:49 am
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Their "concoctions" (aka beers) are not available at the LCBO but they are currently available at about 60 local bars. Presumably some of those venues would be close to your sorry ass.
Jeremy / January 21, 2014 at 12:21 pm
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Oddly, I tried Left Field for the first time at the Loose Moose (upstairs, Antler Room I think?) and absolutely loved it! Best of luck to the owners and wishing you a lot of success in the hood.
Ricky Martin Jr. / January 21, 2014 at 12:41 pm
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Sorry Ben, I can't go to the 60 local bars. I've been banned. I'll have to wait for the LCBO to stock some of these cervesas.

noel / January 21, 2014 at 03:16 pm
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congratulations mark and mandi!
Blake / January 22, 2014 at 02:08 pm
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Yeah! Love these guys. Rock and Roll baby. Also, I play in a band called The '92 Blue Jays... maybe a potential sponsorship at some of our shows in the future... or we could play a jam at the brewery opening.
Alli VB / February 7, 2014 at 02:08 pm
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While I love the addition to the neighbourhood, I have to admit I'm a bit worried - about the smell. Now, it's a small brewery, so it's likely not going to be a problem (I hope!) but I was wondering if there had been any planning in areas like this (regarding how it will effect the neighbourhood). I suppose being drunk will help! :)

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