A burst pipe has forced one Gaithersburg microbrewery to temporarily close its doors.
Growlers Brew Pub general manager Chuck Blessing Jr. said the Olde Towne restaurant had a pipe burst in the early morning hours on Jan. 8. The broken pipe was in the ceiling of the stairwell that goes up to the top floor, he said.
“I estimate that thousands of gallons of water was dumped into the building,” he said. “We had a lot of extensive water damage. Most of the damage is structural.”
Blessing said the cost estimate for damages is somewhere in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.
To repair the damage, the restaurant hired Belfor, an international restoration and repair company based in Birmingham, Mich. Blessing said work is being done to dry the walls and remediate any mold situations.
“We’re still in the process of piecing together what it will cost to rebuild,” he said.
Meanwhile, patrons in the community have taken to Growler’s Facebook page to read about updates on the repair process and extend their wishes for a speedy recovery.
Gaithersburg City Councilman Mike Sesma wrote “Hurry back!” on the page.
“Hurry up! We miss the brews and the burgers!” another patron wrote.
Based on talks with the contractor, Blessing expects the restaurant to be closed for repairs for about three months. Even though the restaurant is closed, the brewmaster is still busy brewing beers inside in preparation for the restaurant’s eventual opening.
March 31 marks the 20th anniversary of the establishment as a brew pub in Montgomery County, Blessing said. His hope is that the restaurant’s reopening can be coordinated with its birthday.
“I think we’re going to take a step backwards, but we’ll get through this,” he said.