DENHAM SPRINGS - Unanimous approval from Planning and Zoning to approve a special use permit, and unanimous approval for a public hearing have a microbrewery inside the city limits closer to a reality.
The final hurdle will be approval from the city council tomorrow night, June 11th.
Le Chien, or 'The Dog' in french, will take over the old oil station at 101 Hummell Street, on the south side of the railroad tracks in downtown Denham Springs. The microbrewery will conduct extensive renovations on the site.
Ron Dunham and his son, Brett, have gone through a roughly six-month process to reach this point. With approval, the permit would allow the establishment to operate at a food-to-alcohol ratio less than what the city considers adequate for restaurants, which is 60-40.
Instead, the microbrewery would be required to operate at 20-80 (food to alcohol, respectively), per state regulations.
Le Chien would serve their very own craft beer, which you 'wouldn't find in stores' according to owner Ron. The food served would be acquired at a window type setting - and they would offer lunch - but there would be no formal wait staff.
But the microbrewery would go beyond just a place to drink beer and eat some food. The Dunham's will purchase the entire lot that stretches from Hummell to Range for both parking and space to have areas for dogs, a patio for outdoor games, and an area for small bands to play.
"A bar is where people go to have some drinks and meet people," Ron Dunham said, "our microbrewery is a destination."
The Dunhams discussed the economic impact of microbreweries on local economies, as well. According to the Louisiana Craft Brewers Guild, Louisiana microbreweries have provided $740 million to local markets, an impact of almost $222 million per establishment in Louisiana.
The meeting begins at 6 p.m. in the city council chambers, inside the old Capital One bank building.