Ari Megalis

Revisting Mercenary Brewery & Distillery

Revisting Mercenary Brewery & Distillery

LOGAN SQUARE, CHICAGO

It's been just over seven months since we last stopped into Mercenary Brewery & Distillery. Back in July '14, founders Adam Cieslak and Ari Megalis, were just getting started on the Illinois' first brewery - distillery combination. This was a brewery without a production beer and a distillery without a Still. Needless to say, there was a long way still to go.

Adam and Ari have been busy since the summer. Half a year later we can walk into the top bottle shops through the city and see their distinctive white labeled bottles of Charlatan Pale Ale or Fat Pug Milk Stout adorning the shelves. They also have a shiny new Still as the centerpiece of their rapidly expanding Logan Square brewery.

The Hop Review's Best Moments of 2014

The Hop Review's Best Moments of 2014

As we all do at this time of year, it's time to look back at 2014. If we do say so ourselves, it's been quite the year for The Hop Review. We've been lucky enough to sit down with no-less than 28 of the craft beer industry's most knowledgeable, passionate, and driven people. This is all on top of the many events we've attended and the countless other awesome folks we've come across; many of who we plan to chat with throughout the next year.

Brewer Chat: Adam & Ari of Mercenary Brewery & Distillery

Brewer Chat: Adam & Ari of Mercenary Brewery & Distillery

LOGAN SQUARE, CHICAGO

Depending on exactly who you ask, there are about 85 craft breweries and 18 craft distilleries in the state of Illinois. Until now, however, there have been exactly zero brewery/distillery combinations in the Land of Lincoln. That's somewhat surprising considering the success seen by other combo facilities like Michigan's New Holland Brewing and Oregon's Rogue Ales & Spirits.

That's all about to change as Mercenary Brewery & Distillery get's set to open in Chicago's Logan Square. Tucked down a side street just round the corner from fellow newcomers Ale Syndicate and Arcade Brewery, owners Ari Megalis and Adam Cieslak are hard at work on their soon-to-be combo facility. We stopped in during their buildout phase to find out more about the lifelong friend's history and their plan to bring the best of both worlds to the Windy City.