Bru in the Citrus Park area of Tampa showcases beers, coffees, teas and snacks exclusively from the state of Florida. A craft beer hall with neither a brewery nor kitchen, Bru is truly a unique concept.
16 taps adorn the back wall of Bru, and signs are posted above stating which beverage comes out of each tap, as well as the region of Florida from which the beverage hails. “Our general philosophy is to showcase and promote brews and snacks from the state of Florida. We also want to provide growlers of different sizes and styles so that these beers can be enjoyed at home as well.” On the said beverage menu on the wall there are three different beverages listed. In addition to beer, there is a cold brew coffee available from St. Petersburg (Florida not Russia), and Kombucha, a tea that has been fermented with cane sugar and has been enjoyed in regions of Asia. This drink is being thrusted back into popularity in many parts of the US. Bru always features a Kombucha on tap from a different provider. The day we were there the Kombucha was from Gainesville, home of the Gators.
Selection of Breweries
How does Bru select its breweries? For this we ask Christian for his method. “We reach out to most of the breweries in Florida, from Jacksonville to Miami as well as Tampa Bay and Orlando and all other smaller cities that have breweries. After contact with the brewery is made and we agree on one of the brews that the brewery features, we investigate to see if they have distribution lines to Tampa. The process pretty much includes all breweries and coffee distributors who follow that criteria. No one is really left out.” I personally have been to Bru several times and have not seen the same beer there twice. This adds to the fun of frequenting this establishment.
In the tasting room there is a flat screen television as well as many board games to entertain adults and children alike. If there is a major sporting event on the television, as there was when we were there, Portugal was playing Spain in the first round of the World Cup, then the audio from the game will be heard throughout the establishment. If there is no game on the television, then a blend of alternative and rock music is played, but not too loud. In the back there is a beer garden where you can enjoy a cigar with your choice of brew, relax and be one with the natural surroundings. If you are hungry for a snack, I highly recommend the Brown Bag of Popcorn which comes from Boca Raton. If you are hungry for something more substantial, there are a number of local restaurants that deliver to Bru. Cigars are not sold on site, but you are always welcome to bring your own.
So if you’re in the mood for an invigorating Kombucha or a righteous brew, Bru is right off the Veteran’s Expressway in Tampa, very close to the airport and many other important destinations in the city. I don’t know what brews will be on tap when you get there, but I’ll know what state they come from.
BRŪ Florida Growler Bar
8729 Gunn Hwy, Odessa, FL
Christian Brugal, owner
Tel: +1 813-328-4721
Offers cigars: No
Offers alcoholic beverages: Yes, beer
Offers food: snacks only, food can be ordered from other restaurants
Smoking indoors/outdoors: Outdoors