Lieferbräu Brewery ready to live up to its name - Republic-Times | News

Lieferbräu Brewery ready to live up to its name

By on June 27, 2018 at 1:42 pm


Lieferbräu Brewery in Red Bud is opening June 30. The brewery is owned by members of the Liefer family. Pictured, from left, are partners Kara Wagner, Stephanie Liefer, Kent Liefer, Kirk Liefer and Kris Liefer. (James “Tal” Moss photo)

Seven years ago, Kris Liefer was working at a winery when he discovered a passion for brewing.

“He was really intrigued by the process of making the wine and the process of making alcohol,” Kris’ brother Kirk Liefer said. “They actually bought him a brew kit because they knew he liked working there and making wine. That kind of sparked his interest in the process. From that point on he started messing around at home and making some brew. We knew when he started making beer that he had a talent and was pretty good.”

Now, Kris and his family are turning his passion into a business at Lieferbräu Brewery, a bar owned by members of the Liefer family that is opening this weekend in Red Bud. 

Kirk and his wife Stephanie,  Kent and Karen Liefer, Kara and Ray Wagner and Kris and Danielle Liefer are partners in the restaurant. Kris will also serve as head brewer.

 Kirk, Kent, Kara and Kris are siblings.

The family’s name was fortuitous for the naming the brewery. In German, Liefer means “to deliver” and bräu means “beer.” 

The family first started thinking about opening a brewery four years ago as Kris’ interest in brewing took off.

Two years later, they got the opportunity they had been waiting for when Kalin and Kathleen Liefer, Kirk’s aunt and uncle, bought the building at 118 E. Market Street. 

Kalin and Kathleen approached the siblings, who come from a farming family, about living their dream of opening a brewery. 

They accepted. 

The Liefer family said the location was a key reason for why they accepted the offer. 

“This town is a thriving, growing town,” Kirk said. “The Red Bud downtown scene is really unique for Southern Illinois. It’s becoming a destination place for people in the Metro East and St. Louis.”

In the two years since accepting Kalin and Kathleen’s proposal, the family has been refurbishing the building, which was built in the late 1800s and has been vacant for approximately 30 years.

The property has required work from the ground up, Kirk said. It now has everything from new floor joists to new walls. The layout has also changed entirely.

Throughout the refurbishing process, the family said they appreciate the work done by contractors, all of whom are local.

“The contractors here did a really good job,” Kirk said. “Each and every one of them that worked here the last year or two just did an above and beyond job on everything.” 

Now, all that work will have a chance to pay off, as Lieferbräu Brewery will host its grand opening from noon to 11 p.m. Saturday. The opening will feature live music from We Got it Covered with Amelia Eisenhauer. 

It will also include Kris’ beer, which will be the only beer served at the establishment. 

Kris said the beer is primarily German-style with some American-style ale. Lieferbräu Brewery will offer lagers and wheat beers, India pale ales, stouts and a variety of liquor options. 

The name of each beer has significance, as it is in some way connected to the family’s or town’s history. The Daniberry Wheat, for example, is named for Kris’ wife, Danielle. 

History is also important in the ambience of the establishment, as there is a rustic quality to the decor. Pictures of farm life and farm paraphernalia adorn the walls. 

That is an intentional choice the family made. 

“Our background is farming,” Stephanie explained. “We’re crop farmers. So we wanted to pay homage to our history of farming and family, which are very important to us. This is a family endeavor in every aspect of it.” 

Stephanie went on to explain the family wanted the brewery, which also has an outside patio area, to be welcoming to everyone.

 “We wanted it to be inviting,” she said. “I know it’s a brewery, but we wanted you to still be able to bring your family here and hopefully enjoy it.”

While it will offer a comforting ambience and craft beer, Lieferbräu Brewery will not serve food. Kirk said that is because there was not space in the building for a kitchen and the family saw no need to compete with nearby restaurants.

“We are very fortunate that we are right in the middle of about four or five restaurants that are all within walking distance,” he said. “They have all said they want to work with us for possible deliveries or dine-in here or possibly using their facilities, as well. We kind of view this as a community endeavor. If something’s good for us, it’s going to be good with all these local businesses.”

Kirk said all those elements — the drinks, the atmosphere and the food from nearby businesses — are designed to contribute to a night out that leaves people wanting more.

“This is a place where you can come in, sit down and enjoy the setting inside and out,” he said. “You can look at the pictures and enjoy the ambience that hopefully we’re providing and have a cold beer. We want to make it comfortable so that when people get here they don’t want to leave or they want to come back.”

After its grand opening, Lieferbräu Brewery will be open Wednesday and Thursday from 4-10 p.m., Friday and Saturday from noon to 11 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 6 p.m.

James Moss