Already one of the most impressive breweries, tasting rooms and craft beers in New Jersey…. Bonesaw Brewing in Glassboro is taking things to another level with the opening of Lager Loft this Saturday.
Another level… Literally and Figuratively.
The second floor Lager Loft tasting room space was developed with the mindset of giving Bonesaw customers two different experiences within the same Glassboro Brewery.
And also a lot of flexibility for future special events or room rentals. You can inquire about renting the space right now!
The Lager Loft Grand Opening is Saturday June 18th, 2022 at noon.. and the first 150 customers will get a free Bonesaw glass!
42Freeway visited this week to learn about Lager Loft, so we can share with our readers ahead of the opening.
We caught up with Co-Founder Dave Doe, who along with business partner and brother-in-law Rich DiVerniero, opened Bonesaw just three and a half years ago.
Immediately after opening Bonesaw became a hit with it’s impressive Mullica Hill Road tasting room… which was backed up by a full stable of delicious craft beers.
The large and impressive tasting room space was matched by the brewery room space and systems… developed at a level unheard of for a new brewery.
Dave gave 42Freeway’s Mark the full Lager Loft tour earlier this week, which also included a tour of their expanded brewing area, and a quick chat on the upcoming Pilot House Brewery coming to the Deptford Mall.
During my visit I also caught up with Tasting Room Manager Alan, and Head Brewmaster A.J.
As you’ll soon see.. Lager Loft is an impressive space in it’s own right, with a capacity of approximately 200 people… so on it’s own the Lager Loft would be considered one of South Jersey’s largest brewery tasting room areas.
And at Bonesaw it’s the second space.
Lager Loft at Bonesaw Brewing Glassboro
Grab a cold one, cause this post is a long one!
I would bet that most who have visited Bonesaw Brewing didn’t even realize there was a second floor above the main tasting room, especially considering the high ceiling on the first floor.
Honestly I think I only know because when I visited with Rich prior to their original opening, he showed me the upstairs space… which back then was completely unfinished.
Four years ago Dave, Rich and the Bonesaw team already had their hands full with finishing the large brewery and the first floor tasting room, that they decided to wait on building out the 2nd floor.
Two Different Experiences
If you haven’t visited Bonesaw at all… add it to your “must visit” list immediately.
The original first floor main tasting room is very large with an almost wall length bar area serving up all of their beers… which of course are all brewed onsite.
This original tasting room has somewhat of a rustic cabin feel too it, but the room leans more lighter and brighter.
The walls are painted light, the large fireplace is a light red brick, and during the day the large window area let’s the outdoor natural lighting shine in.
There is plenty of varied styles of seating options in the original first floor tasting room as well as an all-season patio around the two front walls.
And everything about the space has extra details… extra creative spin.. much of it created by co-founder Rich.
Lager Loft – Barrel Inspired
So finally 1000 words into this… up to the Lager Loft we go! Yes there are steps. And yes there is an elevator!
The Lager Loft still feels very much “Bonesaw” but at the same time it’s completely different.
While it’s a large space of comparable size, the curved barrel wall and lower ceiling makes it feel more cozy.
And whereas the first floor dabbles in the use of wood surfaces… The Lager Loft is defined by it’s wood finishes! Well wood surfaces and real stone blocks.
Basically every surface has been thought through and designed, and it seems the portion of basic painted walls is probably less than 10% of the space in the Lager Loft. It’s all about interesting textured surfaces.
The Lager Loft truly feels more like a Pacific-Northwest inspired cabin… and maybe with a hint of medieval castle!
And it’s all so perfectly crafted with so many interesting details, you’ll quickly think you are closer to Washington State than nearby Washington Township.. or at least maybe Disney’s Wilderness Lodge.
Some very prominent features that jump out…
As you enter the second floor space probably one of the first things you’ll notice is the interesting curved upper wall made from rows of deep rich wood.
Vertical wood strips finish the barrel inspired look.
The curvature gives it a sense of motion.. like a wave. A wave of delicious lager beer!
Random 8 Woodworks Bar – Lager Drafts
While there is a lot in the second floor space to grab your attention, I guarantee the next thing you’ll do is turn around and look at the bar… which was created by Random 8 Woodworks out of Pedricktown NJ.
The woodworking on the bar is amazing, designed and crafted so it looks like it had been there for decades. The team at Random 8 really hit a homerun with the design and build. They also designed and built the tall barrel tables!
The bar is split into three sections with large wood columns, and I believe they have seating in the two outer sections, and are keeping the middle section clear to service the rest of the room.
There are 16 draft taps in the Lager Loft… and I guess it’s about time we clarify where the name comes from.
Primarily the beer served in the Lager Loft space will be Lagers. I know, I know.. no kidding Mark! Currently the Bonesaw beer menu shows 7 choices and I’m sure they’ll add in some of the Bonesaw favorites to the second floor, such as Swoosh.
Because I am a true investigative reporter, I had no choice but to try a few samples of Bonesaw lagers, with Dave as my bartender.
Now my own thoughts on featuring lagers is.. it’s more of an everyman’s everyday beer. IPA’s can have a strong hoppiness. And the darker the beers (like stouts) typically means the flavor becomes richer and stronger.
But everyone loves a lager! And the Bonesaw lagers are packed with delicious flavor without shocking you!
I tried the Shore Town (Helles Lager 4.5% ABV), Crimson Skull (Vienna Lager 5.8% ABV) and Feuchtfrohlich (Altbier 7.4% ABV).
Honestly all three were delicious and very drinkable for all beer lovers… and I’ll make Shore Town and Crimson Skull my regular go-to beers.
Seating and Fireplace
As mentioned the room capacity is around 200 people.
The largest portion of the seating is the center table area. Large rectangular tables seating eight persons, the same for the taller round tables.
On the wall opposite the bar are multiple casual lounge seating areas. Four I believe.
They are set up like small conversation areas or living rooms, which feature comfortable couches and chairs.
In the middle of the lounge area is a really cool fireplace. Well while it looks like a magical two-sided fireplace, it is actually created from mist vapor and lighting!
It’s so cool I want one in my house! Slightly smaller of course.
And as mentioned there is also some seating at the bar
So we should also point out that co-founder Rich is a quiet and humble guy, not really wanting to be in the spotlight. Well Dave is similar, in that they both want the brewery and beer to speak for them.
But for Rich when he isn’t being a top Orthopedic Surgeon or co-building and running a leading South Jersey brewery… he likes to make things. Very creative artistic things.
Aspects of the Bonesaw Brewery on both levels were designed and built by Rich, and if no one told you.. you would’ve just thought a dedicated professional artisan designed the fixtures.
While I should’ve taken better notes on this.. I know that the barrel lamps hanging overhead were the work of Rich.
And then over in the lounge area, the lamps hanging there…. Rich again.
Events, Private Space, and Caterer Prep Area
So maybe it’s time to focus on the other aspect of what the Lager Loft is all about.
Absolutely it was meant to be a second tasting room area, but Rich and Dave wanted more options for customers to enjoy the space.
Lager Loft will be hosting events… both by Bonesaw, or private parties.
You can inquire about hosting your event at Lager Loft right now! Information is at the Bonesaw Event page.
The Lager Loft really would be a perfect space for a smaller wedding.
So the two extra bonuses with the second floor space is…
Private Room: A small private room is being finished, which sits just behind the bar area.
The intent of this small room is for business meetings, football drafts, or if you did have a wedding in the loft, the small room would make a great private area for the bride to get ready.
This space has walls and wiring up, but the finish work was not completed.. so no photo of this room.
But the team has thought of everything as there is an access window to the bar area, so if you are using the private room you have quick access to more delicious beers!
Caterer Prep Area: The last bonus area is a caterer prep area. We all know that in New Jersey breweries cannot sell food.. but customers can bring food in, and catering can be brought in for events.
So the prep area is just a clean area with refrigeration and a sink for external caterers and party hosts to use for their own Lager Loft event!
Restrooms: And of course there are restrooms on the second floor!
Impressive On It’s Own – Amazing In Whole
Overall the entire facility is truly impressive, as are each individual component.
If the Lager Loft were a separate building housing a restaurant, I would post on it and people would go crazy over it.
But then there is the first floor tasting room.. that in itself is another level.
Not to mention the brewery… not only just the shear size of it, but that it has all of the latest innovative brewing technologies.
Gloucester County has some really cool places to visit.. Downtown Pitman is charming, Rowan Boulevard is awesome… but all too often it seems Cherry Hill, Camden County and Burlington County get more of the cool things than Gloucester County!
So yeah, it’s really awesome to have Bonesaw in Gloucester County.
Did I say this was a long post? Well it is. Ha
My Lager Loft write-up was already long but now I am adding in what should’ve been a separate post months ago.
The Bonesaw Brewery Expansion; Larger building, larger parking, new technology.
Before we jump into this.. just want to say that truly the best part of 42Freeway for me is getting to meet so many amazing owners. Meeting new people and making new friends.
I really had a great time hanging with Dave this week and getting the full rundown of the brewery.
He’s a sharp guy who has learned the full brewery business… a LARGE brewery business at that, with much of the brewery buildout and growth happening while he was in a high-level role for a large corporation.
Very impressive that he pulled it all off.
So we did the tour of the brewery… we toured the full Lager Loft space… and then just started tasting beers and chatting. About the brewery business, about 42Freeway and my plans!
And soon Tasting Room manager Alan joined us a bit.
Just like we were old friends! Good times!
In the Summer of 2020 the Bonesaw crew went back to Glassboro Planning to ask for approval to build an addition the building, and to increase the parking lot size.
The building was only 2 years old at the time, and Bonesaw was already thinking ahead!
Some core aspects of the back portion of the addition is that they added a second large walk-in refrigerator unit, which gives them space for canned beer products and other storage.
And they added a two bay doors for tractor trailers… where the trailer deck is same height as the brewery.
Not something you would necessarily list as a game-changer for the brewery, but considering the amount of material and product moving out, it really has improved their processes.
Close to the main entrance of Bonesaw is a new and very prominent feature… a logoed grain silo.
The 28 foot tall silo can hold up to 53,000 pounds of grain, and offers benefits in bulk pricing for the brewery…as well as reduce packaging if delivered in smaller quantiles.
Immediately inside the building is a dedicated small grain room to control the flow of the grain into the building’s beer production processes.
Some of these items may have been added previously.. but they definitely weren’t there when the brewery opened!
Barrel Room: A barrel room was added so that Bonesaw can store and age beer in the very traditional whiskey and bourbon barrels… for that darker and higher alcohol content beer.
Automated Canning and De-palletizer: When I received my preopening tour 4 years ago… I don’t think Bonesaw was doing any canning at all… well this large automated canning system wasn’t in place. The large steel rack system to the left is a De-Palletizer, which feeds cans into the canning machine!
Funky Coolships Room: As part of the expansion, an area was developed on the front side of the building where the entrance is, to house a “coolships” room. While not setup at this time, soon the space will have open air vats where beer is left to cool.
This traces back centuries ago to the start of beer brewing, when this was the main way to cool the beer after brewing.
The fermentation happens in the open-air vessel and picks up natural fauna in the air. The end result is a beer that is tart, funky and complex! The Funky Coolships Room!
Always something new on the way at Bonesaw!
Exterior Fermentation Tanks: While not installed yet, Bonesaw was also approved for exterior fermentation tanks which will be located on the outside of the back side of the building.
The concrete “patio” which is currently in placed there was sized to hold the weight of the fermentation tanks.
Fermentation tanks are part of all beer brewing process and is where the ingredients of beer (wort , yeast) sit and ferment. Because the tanks are sealed they can be placed in much larger sizes outside the building, freeing up space inside for other brewing equipment
Centrifuge: A centrifuge enables the brewery to get more beer out of the batch, and to move faster through fermentation to the finished product.
This was actually in place in my second visit to Bonesaw for the website back in 2019.. but I include it here because it’s awesome.
With a centrifuge breweries are able to yield more beer per batch, and speed up the process from fermentation to a finished product.
Cold Liquor Tank: Three years ago Rich told me they designed the initial install of brewery piping with valves to support other pieces of equipment to come later, such as a cold liquor tank.
Soon after that visit they purchased and installed one.
When we spoke earlier in this post of a coolship using an open air vessel to cool down beer… the Cold Liquor Tank is basically the opposite… cold water that is used to quick cool the brewed beer.
Mash Filter: This was in place at the opening and is a neat piece of equipment. It mashes the grain to extract the liquid wort out.. with an amazing 98% efficiency.
On average homebrew efficiencies fall between 65-80%.
What comes out of the Bonesaw Mash Filter is a compressed dry grain.. which is then used by area cow farms. The cows love it!
Pilot House – Deptford Mall
Dave and I closed out the visit with a quick chat on their upcoming new location… Pilot House at the Deptford Mall, which 42Freeway wrote about on March 1st, 2022
If it wasn’t clear to folks… “Pilot” in the brewing business means… when you are trying out a new beer recipe, you brew a small batch.
Very similar to my software development life where on a new software application we’d give the application just to a few users.
So the intent of the Pilot House is for Bonesaw to get even more creative with their beers… smaller batches of new recipes, plus a few of the favorites.
And it will be a full brewery… making all of the beers onsite.
Links and Location
Dave, Rich, A.J. and Alan… such an amazing place you guys have built in Glassboro! Thanks for giving me and the 42Freeway readers the tour, and I can’t wait to stop back to do more “research” at the brewery!
Bonesaw Brewing Lager Loft (Opens Saturday June 18, 2022)
570 Mullica Hill Rd
Glassboro, NJ 08028