A local brewery has been announced as a recipient of the Clyde Carpenter Adaptive Re-use Award presented by the Blue Grass Trust for Historic Preservation.
Sig Luscher earned the honor given by the nonprofit to an individual or group for outstanding efforts toward the rehabilitation and adaptive re-use of a building or buildings in Central Kentucky.
Kentucky has many breweries, but Sig Luscher stands out as Kentucky’s oldest. Named after the family that founded the brand, not only is Sig Luscher’s Kentucky’s oldest brewery, but it is also the eighth oldest in the nation. Many original, historic beer and bourbon brands are being brought back by Kentuckians, but few can say that they are the original beer brought back by the original family.
Dating back to 1886, the brewery was located downtown Frankfort where the Transportation Cabinet now stands. Unfortunately, the original brewery was demolished, so when the Sig Luscher family decided to revive their heritage and re-open a taproom, they sought a new location for operations and a taproom.
In December 2018, they opened a taproom across from the brewery’s original site, at 221 Mero St., located in what owner Tim Luscher called a “BBQ Bomb.” The building was a pre-fab coffee shop located on US 27 South in Garrard County, and had been moved to Frankfort and used as a BBQ stand.
The Luscher’s kept the original structure and renovated it, going for an authentic 1886 brewery feel on the interior. They went so far as to use wood from the family farm for the walls and bar, carefully choosing each finish to give the taproom a gas-lit feeling.
The room includes a mash paddle from the original family brewery and other mementos. They also received permission from the Planning and Zoning Committee to construct additions in order to make the space more workable for the company’s other needs. A mix of both contemporary and historic fabric, it features both indoor and outdoor seating, as well as a bar and a space for equipment and supplies.