It’s Bier:Thirty. Time for a craft beer in Bown Crossing.

Bier:Thirty Bottle & Bistro co-owner Chris Oates said the recent decision to leave the Brewforia Beer Market name behind and adopt the new name for his craft beer store in Bown Crossing was over a difference in long term philosophy — not a falling out with Brewforia owner Rick Boyd.

So the beer store with 400 beers in bottles for sale and 10 taps for drafts and growler refills at 3073 South Bown Way is no longer called Brewforia. It's Bier:Thirty Bottle & Bistro. The owners say they are committed as ever to being the premier destination for craft beer enthusiasts in East Boise. It’s just that the bistro has a new name. They do want to expand their menu a little bit more, and they also - gasp! — offer wine by the glass.

Bier:Thirty Bottle & Bistro. The name is a riff on the concept that there is never a bad time to enjoy a craft beer. It’s always beer thirty.

Oates said the decision to break away from Brewforia was amicable, although he is a little cagey when asked why. It reminds me of the whole “creative differences” that break up bands all the time. It really doesn’t matter that much to the customer if they can get the same beers and food.

“We just had a different vision, and wanted to go a different direction ... more of a ‘grand scheme of things’ issue,” Oates said. “We are really happy here at Bown Crossing. It’s such a great environment here.”

Oates said he didn’t pay a franchise fee for the Brewforia name and didn’t take a financial hit to change to Bier:Thirty.

Boyd tells a similar story.

Boyd says the Brewforia store in Bown was not an official franchise but more of handshake agreement with Oates, who was Brewforia’s first employee.

The Bown store/bistro had been open for about six months and some differences in philosophy were becoming apparent. Like offering wine by the glass at a beer store. Both sides say it was time to split.

“There is no hard feelings with us,” Boyd said. “Our mission statement is very clear. We are specifically beer focused. That is the most important thing. If they want to have more of a focus on northwest cuisine, or wine, it’s doesn’t really work with Brewforia.”

Boyd said he is investigating spots in east Boise and Eagle to open new Brewforia stores and is also working on franchising the concept in Idaho and elsewhere. He also says from this point on if someone other than him opens a Brewforia store, it will be an official franchise.

Oates says he is excited about the future of Bier:Thirty in Bown and is already experimenting with the menu to add more dishes. They can’t do pizzas or flatbreads, because the Flatbread Community Oven is only a few doors down.

But they are experimenting with adding more entrees, which they call “plates”(more like single dishes — not a typical meat, starch, vegetable entrees), to their already impressive list of sandwiches, chicken wings, appetizers.

For instance, they are developing plates based on the sloppy joe and another featuring meatloaf with truffle mashed potatoes to go along with the current plates like northwest “bangers and mash”(chicken sausage on top of sweet potatoes) and beer broth mussels.

Check out the menu here.

Just reading it is making me hungry.

The important thing out of all this is east Boise residents still have a bottle shop to call their own, a place where they can get a sixer or a growler refill without having to go Downtown or anywhere else. It also continues to make Bown Crossing a destination place for the rest of the Treasure Valley — like Hyde Park east.

A&W is closed for the night and I won't shop at Wal Mart here.


I NEVER hate telling you I was right...I would be dead if I did. Get real.