Photo by Michael Kelly for AliveTampaBay.
By Michael Kelly, AliveTampaBay Correspondent
Located right off of Dunedin’s Main Street, founders Cary Lamb, Andrew Buckenham and Lucas Rizor proudly said welcome to their new craft brewery — Soggy Bottom Brewery Co. — in early April. A process almost four years in the making, its doors finally opened to deliver locally brewed beer to a city thirsty for new recipes.
No strangers to the area, Lamb, Buckenham and Rizor have been local bartenders for the better part of the last decade. Altogether, they boast over 30 years of combined experience, all behind various bars in Dunedin.
Years of getting to know each other from working the nightlife led the three to discover they share a hobby in brewing beer. After some trial and error with home recipes, their beer quickly won over their family and neighbors. All of a sudden the idea of doing this for a living wasn’t so far-fetched. This was early in 2012, and less than four years later this group of friends can proudly say it went from rough draft to full scale operation.
“We had so much pride in the beer we were making and the work we were doing, we felt it would be really special if we started our own place,” Lamb said. “So we went for it.”
When faced with the decision of choosing a location, the triad knew they had options around North Pinellas, but found it best suited to remain the familiar faces behind the bar in the city the knew so well.
“Dunedin is a family town and and we enjoy seeing everyone support each other,” Lamb went on to say. “The decision wasn’t very hard.”
SBB launched with four signature beers: a toasted coconut porter, blackberry hefeweizen, amber ale, and black IPA. Four other taps feature wine, and another for cider. In addition, 14 guest brews from other Tampa Bay area breweries are on draft, but that number will decrease as the operation grows.
“We have 20 to 30 recipes in the works, and hope to eventually rotate about 10 to 12 at all times,” Lamb said. “We’re hoping to have something for every kind of beer drinker and then some.”
Soggy Bottom Brewing Co. is now one of seven breweries in the city of Dunedin, the most per capita in Florida, joining the likes of Dunedin Brewery, 7venth Sun Brewery, Dunedin House of Beer, Woodwright Brewing Co, Cueni Brewing Co, and another new operation, Caledonia Brewing. Lamb said everyone has been very supportive and together the city makes for a great downtown experience.