Canon & Draw Brewing: Building Community in the Fan
Photo Credit: Mick Anders
Fall Line Farms and Local Roots has been lucky in forming associations with other community-minded organizations. Our newest pickup location, Canon & Draw Brewing Company, is no exception. When she learned that our friends at Bombolini would no longer have room to host us after their upcoming remodel, our intrepid Market Manager, Becky Lillywhite, stepped right down the street to Canon & Draw and formed a new partnership there. It promises to be a fruitful one for all of us.
According to Matt Lillard, General Manager of Canon & Draw, the unusual name of the business is a nod to the name of the family that owns it: the Coopers. In history, coopers were artisans--barrel makers who used hand tools to ply their craft. In fact, “Canon” is French for “barrel,” and “Draw” comes from the draw knife used by a traditional cooper to carve and shape the wooden staves of the barrel by hand. The name of Steam Bell Brewing Company, an “older sister” to Canon & Draw and under the same ownership, is located in Midlothian. It’s named for the steam tool used to bend the wooden staves of a barrel into their curved shape.
So Canon & Draw, as its name suggests, is about careful craftsmanship—specifically the skill required to brew great beer. Matt is careful to explain that Canon & Draw is also all about building community.
“We’ve paid attention to the décor,” says Matt. “We want people to spend time here, meet up for conversations, and relax. We don’t want their visits to feel strictly transactional. We like being part of the neighborhood and encouraging that feel.” They welcome people in by offering $5 beers every Wednesday, booking live music every other Friday night and hosting advocacy groups from time to time, such as a recent cancer benefit and a meeting of the Capital Region Land Conservancy.
“We’re dog friendly, too,” says Matt. “In fact, one of our regulars hosted a dog birthday party here in early February.”
One welcome consequence of making this ample space so beautiful and inviting is that Canon & Draw has become an event space as well as a popular neighborhood taproom. They’ve begun to rent the space for events, including rehearsal dinners, weddings, and other gatherings. Canon & Draw lends itself beautifully to this purpose, as the space can be divided and configured to offer event guests their own private restrooms and entrance.
Patrons can bring their own food in to Canon & Draw and enjoy a craft brew with lunch or dinner bought elsewhere. They can also enjoy the pool tables and dartboards as they sip their beer. Occasionally, there’s a pop-up or some other interesting happening. Keep an eye on their social media (see below) and their website at www.canonanddraw.beer to find out what’s coming up next.
Pickup times for Fall Line Farms and Local Roots members will run from 2 PM to 8 PM on Thursdays. A perk of membership is that our FLF&LR members get a 10% discount when they purchase a beer at pickup time! Cheers to making new friends in our old neighborhood!
Visit Canon & Draw Brewing Company at 1527 West Main Street in Richmond’s Fan district. You can also find them on Facebook (@canonanddraw) and on Instagram as canonanddraw.