There’s a hidden gem in a picturesque block of Lake Park, The Brewhouse Gallery where “brew” really means cooking up art, music, poetry and more.
“People are surprised when they come here,” says Manager Steve Conklin. “There’s a lot going on and we partner with the Kelsey Theater for performance and our neighbor Brick and Barrel for catering.”
A true place for community, The Brewhouse Gallery was started four years ago by artist AJ Brockman, who acquired the nearby Kelsey Theater and the Brewhouse space. More than a music venue for live bands or a comedy club, the aim for the spaces is a comfortable, friendly hangout that’s more important than ever.
“In the age of smartphones, we all need places where we can go and enjoy real things like live reggae music with real people. Built on the legacy of West Palm Beach’s legendary underground arts scene, we at the Kelsey are all about making sure that we’re giving you just that,” he says on the website.
Starting with the visual art, the Gallery gives 18 artists wall space for a three-month exhibit and allows them to keep 100% of the sales. Some of the high profile artists exhibiting currently are Amanda Valdes, who has large murals all over Palm Beach County as well at Wynwood in Miami and across the country; and Craig McInnis who is co-founder of Art Synergy and Continuum and art director for the annual Fright Nights.
“The exhibits change all the time so when people come here there is always something new to see,” Conklin says. “What’s really special is out back behind the building, a 900-foot mural that runs the length of the whole building that we switch up every year with a new theme. It’s the longest mural in the area and has been here for years. We hold a block party when the artists are finishing it up with food trucks and craft vendors and music.”
Inside the Brewhouse is always changing too with trivia nights, music Fridays through Sundays that ranges from reggae to acoustic folk.
“We have a lot of classic games too, ranging from board games like Chess, Monopoly and Chinese Checkers people played when they were kids. In the back room we have a gaming station with an X Box and even vintage video machines up front like Pac Man. We even have Shuffleboard! We also sell jewelry and t-shirts in the back cave room there.”
The Brewhouse is decorated with funk in mind, from thrift shop chairs to mismatched sofas made from repurposed Ford truck tailgates. Ottomans, oversized pillows, coffee tables, neon signs, dinette sets, game tables, and high top seating dots the space like mushrooms after rain.
Over at the bar, the drink ingredients are all locally sourced and made from scratch – craft cocktails, local beers and boutique vineyard wines. Food is from Brick and Barrel, which means the quality is higher than average bar food with Vegan Burgers, Italian Pork Sausage with Broccoli Rabe, Brie Sandwiches, Falafel Sliders, deep dish pizzas in five different flavors, and a selection of small plates that includes a Scotch Egg (boiled egg wrapped in sausage served with aioli), cheddar fondue, chicken wings and fish and chips.
Food, music, art, and games.
“This is really a creative space for people to try new ideas or just relax and connect with other people,” Conklin says. “We get all ages here, from people in their 20s to their 60s. People that attend shows at The Kelsey come over here afterwards for a drink or bite to eat then end up staying to hear some live music. We host private events too for birthdays or small business events. At our last mural party we had over 1,000 people show up. There’s really nothing else like it in Palm Beach, it’s not just a corporate coffeehouse or just a sports bar or just a night club, it’s a total community gathering place. Lake Park is a special little area and we like to think we bring something different here.”
Lake Park’s The Brewhouse Gallery Has Art and Performance on Tap