Local breweries, craft beer bars react to 'Brunch Bill'

Sycamore Brewing is celebrating the "Brunch Bill" passing with the “First Ever Sunday Boozy Brunch” this Sunday at 10 a.m.

What has been dubbed the “Brunch Bill” got its official Charlotte seal of approval Monday night, as the city council voted unanimously to allow alcohol sales to establishments with proper permits beginning at 10 a.m. The ordinance takes effect this Sunday, July 30.

Officially titled Senate Bill 155, Governor Roy Cooper signed the bill in late June but a provision was that each city and/or county had to individually vote to change the Sunday alcohol hours from noon to 10 a.m.

It was never a question this was going to pass in Charlotte. Mayor Jennifer Roberts tweeted her support almost immediately after Cooper signed the bill, and this is sure to bring in more money for many of the city’s establishments. It was also an ancient law in dire need of change, as comical lines previously formed at the front of bars and grocery store lines around 11:50 a.m., with everyone looking at the clock.

However, not everyone will be running to change their hours based on the new ordinance. Some places, such as Unknown Brewing, make perfect sense. The brewery is right by Bank of America Stadium, and even has a beer called Pre-Game session ale (as you expect, a lot of this change is based on football). But there are others that are happy with their current Sunday hours and see no need to change, based on a variety of reasons.

(This is the part of the article where I need to let out a few disclaimers. This is not an all-encompassing list for the entire city. I would imagine many of your favorite brunch spots will be serving alcohol beginning at 10 a.m. (if not, that seems like lost money). The same goes for grocery stores and gas stations selling beer too. I primarily write about beer for Charlotte Magazine, so my main focus was on the breweries and local shops. Also, with a kind nod to the great breweries around the outskirts of Charlotte, those are in different cities – for instance, Cornelius and Huntersville have already approved their respective ordinances). So you won’t see them below.

With that said, here’s a rundown of who’s throwing the doors open early on Sundays, who’s taking a wait-and-see approach and who’s keeping status quo hours.



Birdsong Brewing Co. – No change in hours; opens at noon on Sundays


Blue Blaze Brewing – Will be changing its hours at some point but not sure of timing. When the brewery does open early, it will partner with Fresh Eats catering for Sunday brunch. Currently opens at noon on Sundays.


Catawba Brewing Co. – General manager Tanya Birch says there are no immediate plans to open earlier on Sundays but that could change based on the volume of customers. She added that if enough customers ask to open early, the brewery will seriously consider it. Catawba is also considering opening early for football season. Currently opens at noon on Sundays.


Heist Brewery – One of the most popular brunch spots in Charlotte; owner Kurt Hogan says Heist will definitely be serving alcohol beginning at 10 a.m. on Sundays. This will also be the case at the adjacent Heist Canteen taproom, as well as Heist Brewing and Barrel Arts in North End, scheduled to open this fall.


Legion Brewing – No immediate plans to change hours, but that could change in the future. Currently opens at noon on Sundays.


Lenny Boy Brewing – Will open 10 a.m. on Sundays starting Aug. 6.


NoDa Brewing Co. – Yes, but with a catch. NoDa plans to open at 11 a.m. every other Sunday beginning in August for a new event, Hop Yoga. (Think yoga, but with a can of beer. This video provides a little more insight). Classes are $10, which includes the beer.


Olde Mecklenburg Brewery – Beginning August 6, Olde Mecklenburg will open at 11 a.m. on Sundays.


Salud Cerveceria – Will open at 10 a.m. on Sundays for Panthers home games.


Sugar Creek Brewing Company – No change in hours; opens at noon on Sundays.


Sycamore Brewing – Co-owner Sarah Brigham says not only will Sycamore open earlier on Sundays, the South End brewery is also putting on a special event to celebrate the new ordinance. The “First Ever Sunday Boozy Brunch” begins this Sunday at 10 a.m. with all taps flowing, along with mimosas and wine. Tin Kitchen is curating a special brunch menu for the occasion, and there will also be a yoga class at 9 a.m. and live music throughout the day.


Thirsty Nomad Brewing – No change in hours; opens at 1 p.m. on Sundays.


Triple C Brewing Company – No change in hours; opens at noon on Sundays.


Unknown Brewing Co. – Arguably the establishment  that will see the most new business from the new ordinance, Unknown will be open at 10 a.m. just in time for Panthers season.


Wooden Robot Brewery – Brewery CEO Josh Patton says it’s unlikely Wooden Robot’s hours will change on Sundays, though he didn’t rule out the idea of putting on a brunch every now and then with the brewery’s in-house kitchen, Twisted Eats. Currently Wooden Robot opens at noon on Sundays.


Notable craft beer bars/bottle shops

Brawley’s Beverage – Will now open at 11 a.m. on Sundays.


Craft Tasting Room and Growler Shop – Owner Dan Davis says Craft will be opening earlier, though not immediately. More than likely the new hours will take effect at the beginning of football season.


Duckworth’s Grill and Taphouse – The three Charlotte locations have always opened at 11 a.m. on Sundays, so you’ll now be able to order your favorite craft beer an hour early. However, there are no plans to open any earlier.


Good Bottle Co. – No immediate plans to change hours, but that could change in the future. Currently opens at noon on Sundays.


Pop the Top – Will open at 10 a.m. on Sundays once football season starts.


Rhino Market – Already opens at 9 a.m. on Sundays, will now serve and sell alcohol beginning at 10 a.m.


Salud Beer Shop – As with the brewery upstairs, the bottle shop will be opening at 10 a.m. for Panthers home games.


Waiting to hear from (will update accordingly): Bold Missy Brewery, Bulldog Beer & Wine, Common Market, Free Range Brewing, The Hop Shop, Three Spirits Brewery

Categories: Beer, By Matt McKenzie