Another brewery is coming to the Butte Hill, resurrecting some of the Mining City’s most famous beer brands in the process.
Tony and Teresa Olson plan to break ground on the Butte Brewing Co., 480 E. Galena St., in the next few weeks. And by this fall they expect to be serving famous local beers that have not been imbibed in decades: Butte Special and Highlander.
The 12,000-square-foot building will be built a block south of East Park Street. It will house the brewery and taste room as well as a conference room and office space for the couple’s other business, Safety and Health Services, which they have owned since 1994.
Teresa Olson, a native of Anaconda, and her Butte-born husband said they have been working on the brewery project for five or six years, and they are finally ready to move forward.
“It’s been quite a long haul,” she said. “It has been a side thing for us with our other business. But not anymore.”
A few years ago, the Olsons drove to Helena to be the first in line at 7 a.m. when the rights to the Butte Brewing Co. and some of its most famous beer brands became available.
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The Butte Brewing Co. was founded in 1885 by Henry Muntzer. The brewery, which distributed throughout the Mountain West, stood on Wyoming Street until its closure in 1965. Butte Special advertisements remain affixed to a number of Uptown buildings, and its cans and bottles can be found in barrooms and antique shops throughout town.
The history, and brand recognition, is important to the Olsons.
“We wanted to make sure we were first in line,” said Teresa. “We were and we got it.”
Tony Olson has been a brewing beer in his home for nearly a decade, but they plan to hire a full-time brewer to help get the operation off the ground. They purchased the copper brewing system formerly used by Helena’s Blackfoot Brewery and will assemble that in the new building.
Olson said the building’s exterior will consist of bronze-colored corrugated metal and brick and have an “industrial, historical look.” It is expected to be more than a $550,000 project. The Olson’s will go before the East Butte Renovation and Rehabilitation Agency this week to seek matching grant money to help with the construction.