Kulshan Brewery’s second taproom opens in Bellingham

Kulshan Brewery opened its second brewery over the weekend, including a taproom that serves around 120 customers, providing more room for one of the more popular - and often crowded - venues in central Bellingham .

The new facility, which opened Saturday, May 30, at 1538 Kentucky St., has about 12,000 square feet and mostly serves as a production brewery. Kulshan’s first facility at 2238 James St. will continue as is, but in the production area it will focus on seasonal brews, said owner David Vitt.

While the craft beer business has exploded in the past few years, Vitt says the potential for growth remains enormous, as beer drinkers continue to shift away from the predictable flavors of mass-produced beers that still account for the vast majority of barrels consumed in this country.

“We’ve only been open three years, but it’s obvious that there’s a market out there for our beer,” he said in an earlier interview published in Whatcom Magazine.

Kulshan’s two breweries are designed to operate every day, but the brewing process typically is just three to four days a week. The rest of the work week involves cleanup, filtering and packaging. It takes about six people to keep the small James Street brewery running, and job descriptions are flexible, as they tend to be at any small business. On a recent afternoon, sales and delivery man Scott Persson was busy washing out kegs and growlers.

“One of my favorite things about working here is, everyone knows what needs to be done and is willing to help each other out,” he said.