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Forgotten Boardwalk Brewing Cherry Hill Closing, Stating Issues With Lease Extension

Forgotten Boardwalk Brewing Cherry Hill Closing, Stating Issues With Lease Extension
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Cherry Hill NJ’s beloved Forgotten Boardwalk Brewing announced today in a direct and strongly worded social media post that they are closing at the end of February, due to an inability to extend their lease.

The Forgotten Boardwalk Brewing’s tasting room carries a fun Jersey Boardwalk theme with skeeball games, video arcade machine and a decorative Merry-Go-Round horse…  but it clearly wasn’t a fun day for brewery owner Jamie Queli, who I had a chance to speak with when I stopped in to the Olney Ave. brewery late this afternoon.

Forgotten Boardwalk Brewing in Cherry Hill is closing after almost 10 years!

Jamie has owned and operated the brewery for almost 10 years, and in her announcement today she basically covered most of the core details of the closing from her perspective, which is set for a last day of February 29th.

To set the storyline, the current lease for the brewery was ending and Jamie was hoping to continue operating Forgotten Boardwalk Brewing at the same site.  Jamie describes the negotiation process as such;

We have vigorously tried to sign a lease extension with our landlord to no avail as our next door neighbor has leased out the space from underneath us. We are extremely disappointed and quite frankly, appalled at the actions of both companies and their adamant refusals to negotiate with us.

Forgotten Boardwalk Brewing Owner Jamie Queli, in a written announcement on her closing.

While this is my first time meeting and chatting with Jamie I could tell she is a passionate and caring person, who calls things as she sees it.  And she clearly is very passionate about her brewery, staff and customers…… which all combined represent her livelihood.

Forgotten Boardwalk Brewing in Cherry Hill offers a fun tasting room featuring skeeball machines and video arcade game! Plus delicious beers! Sadly, February 29th is the last day

In my conversation this afternoon with Jamie at her brewery she provided some extra clarification to me, stating that it originally was the landlord who did not want to resign her to an extension of the lease.

The landlord then reached out to the neighboring business who is the tenant in the remaining (larger) portion of the building… and the tenant agreed to take over her space.

From my calculations, Forgotten Boardwalk Brewing leases about 25% of the building and the other tenant in the 60,000 sq ft building occupies the other 75%.

Jamie also shared with me when she realized the sun had permanently set on her Forgotten Boardwalk (at the Cherry Hill address), when one day several staff members of the neighboring business entered the brewery unannounced as any customer would… but started looking at the wall which divides the two businesses.

The staff were reviewing the wall in various places, trying to determine connection points to the other side and discussing where they could punch holes into the wall to connect the spaces. All of this being a surprise to her and her staff.

Farewell message from Jamie Queli regarding the upcoming closing of her Forgotten Boardwalk Brewery.

Admittedly there are three entities in this story and I’ve only spoken to one (it is late on a Friday)…  but with the Forgotten Boardwalk Brewing farewell message and her “pulls-no-punches” depiction already online and seen by thousands, myself and other media outlets are covering this based on what is available to us.

Jamie closes her farewell by indicating that as she is hopeful that there is still a future for the brewery, even if in another form.

While this chapter is coming to an end, we hope that Forgotten Boardwalk will continue, possibly in another form, in the future. In the meantime, we are welcoming any and all business opportunities for Forgotten Boardwalk.

Forgotten Boardwalk Brewing Owner Jamie Queli, in a written announcement on her closing.

Forgotten Boardwalk Brewing – Cherry Hill

Jamie followed a beer brewing path that many of us have taken or started on, which is first as a beer enthusiast, and then becoming a homebrew hobbyist.

But in October of 2014 she took the leap that only a few have the knowledge and guts to take… she opened the Forgotten Boardwalk Brewing in October 2014.

The brewery is located on Olney Ave. in Cherry Hill Industrial Park off of Springdale Road.  The space she occupies was originally home to Flying Fish Brewery, before they moved to a much larger space in Somerdale.

While the tenant before Jamie was also a brewery, the space was left completely empty when she moved in and she had to start from scratch.

Growing up at the Jersey Shore, the Bradley Beach resident felt that combining two of her loves…  delicious craft beer and the fun and excitement of the Jersey Shore…. Would make for a perfect brewery experience in southern New Jersey.

“My favorite thing about Forgotten Boardwalk is the facility itself.  My aim when I was building it was to make it into an experience.  I wanted people to not only come and visit for the beer but come and visit and enjoy its whimsical setting.  I put in skeeball machines, fun house mirrors, spinning wheels, and antiques

Forgotten Boardwalk Brewing Owner Jamie Queli on her inspiration for the brewery. From their website

For the most part the industrial park looks like what you expect… mostly non-descript rectangular brick buildings. That being said over the years a variety of other businesses types have joined in the mix including Monster Golf and Foodie Hall.

For the brewery, they have an end unit of an office/warehouse building that you would never realize was home to a fun and delicious brewery!

But inside the experience changes as the space provides a well thought out tasting room with a bar to the left, a variety of table options to the right, as well as the ski ball, arcade game and carnival mirrors.

I participate in many online craft beer Facebook groups and reddit/ popular NJBeer subreddit, and honestly everyone seems to really enjoy the beers and the selection offered by Forgotten Boardwalk.

Recently Forgotten Boardwalk Brewing was named NJBeer’s Brewery of the Week. The folks in the Reddit group can be too honest and unforgiving at times, but generally had very positive things to say.

  • Always really liked hanging out here when I lived closer. 
  • One of the most creative breweries in the state, and always a fun hang
  • Everything I’ve had from them has always been enjoyable. Tower No.4 hits all the notes.
  • I decided to give it a shot and I’m really glad I did. They had a couple of very solid beers at the time, plus a handful of interesting things they were messing around with. So of course I hit them up again shortly after that and was similarly impressed. Now they’re one of the breweries I hit regularly since they’re close and I know there will be something good at any given time.
  • One of my favorite local breweries.
  • Solid brewery overall. Nice setup.
  • I enjoy their space and theming.
  • Morro Castle is one of my favorites from them, a lightly smoked porter, although it has varied over the years.
  • They have some nice hazies nowadays, and a variety of other styles.

Their craft mastery extends into other product lines also, including J’aime Sparked Seltzer which in 2019 won the silver medal at the Fizz Fight: America’s First Hard Seltzer Festival and Competition which was held in Denver.    According to an article in the Courier-Post they beat out competitors including the nationally known White Claw.

Forgotten Boardwalk Brewing
1940 Olney Ave, Ste 100
Cherry Hill, NJ 08003