By Alex Bridges
A Warren County herb farm operator can move ahead with plans to start a microbrewery and brewpub.
The Board of Supervisors on Tuesday voted unanimously to approve a request for a conditional-use permit requested by the owners of Sunflower Cottage to operate a microbrewery and a brewpub at their property, which is located at 150 Ridgemont Road, near Reliance Road. Billie and Arnold Clifton needed the permit because Sunflower Cottage is on land zoned for agricultural use.
Supervisors first needed to add definitions of microbrewery and brewpub to the county zoning ordinance, identify the uses as ones approved by a permit and establish supplementary guidelines. The board unanimously approved the changes to the ordinance, made at the Cliftons' request.
At least 5 percent of the hops used in the microbrewery production must be grown on the premises, according to ordinance. The rules also limit the number of seats to 50 in the brewpub and 10 in the microbrewery.
Billie Clifton has said it seemed appropriate to grow hops at Sunflower Cottage given that the key ingredient found in beer is an herb. In addition to the growing popularity of growing hops, the Cliftons also looked at the microbrewery industry.
Sunflower Cottage operators plan to plant hops this spring and then harvest the herbs in the fall, according to Billie Clifton.
Also at the meeting, supervisors:
Contact staff writer Alex Bridges at 540-465-5137 ext. 125, or firstname.lastname@example.org