A beer garden is coming to the Esplanade
Another outdoor beer garden is coming to Boston. Night Shift Brewing will open two seasonal pavilions on the Charles River in Boston, one on the Esplanade not far from the Hatch Shell and a second in Brighton at Herter Park, near where the Head of the Charles is held.
“We’re thrilled because we’ve been looking for an ideal place to open a beer garden,” Michael Oxton, cofounder of Night Shift Brewing, said. “I don’t think we could have found two better locations than on the Charles River.”
Once unheard of in Boston, outdoor beer gardens are in bloom at several well-known locations in the city, including the Greenway and even City Hall Plaza. As long as there’s foot traffic, Oxton said he doesn’t expect sharing the spotlight with other beer garden operators, such as Trillium and Downeast Cider House, to be a problem.
Everett-based Night Shift was selected by the state Department of Conservation and Recreation, which operates the parks. Oxton expects the one on the Esplanade, roughly opposite Clarendon Street, will open around the beginning of August, and the second location in Brighton shortly after, by mid-August. They will remain open until late October.
Oxton said the pop-ups will have an Oktoberfest aesthetic, with long communal tables and string lighting. With 24 taps, Night Shift will feature not only its own beers but also those from other local breweries. There will also be nonalcoholic drinks available. Oxton said the beer garden’s goal is to create a family-friendly environment with lawn games.
“I’m imagining pouring a pint of our beer and looking over the river. I can’t think of a better scene than that,” Oxton said.
Night Shift will pay DCR approximately 50 cents per alcoholic drink, which will be used for park restoration. Oxton said he has spent more than $100,000 in startup costs for the two beer gardens.
“We are excited to be working with Night Shift Brewing, where two beer gardens will be strategically located along the iconic Charles River, providing a picturesque landscape that will be truly enjoyed by so many,” DCR Commissioner Leo Roy said in a statement.
The Esplanade beer garden will be open five days a week, from 4 to 10 p.m. on Wednesday and Thursday, from noon to 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, and from noon to 8 p.m. on Sunday. The Brighton beer garden will be weekends only, from noon to 10 p.m. on Saturday and noon to 8 p.m. on Sunday. Night Shift Brewing is still subject to local and state alcohol licensing for the locations.
Night Shift Brewing plans to open a 12,000-square-foot location on Boston’s Lovejoy Wharf near TD Garden and North Station by the end of this year.