Rabid Brewing gets approval from Homewood trustees


Installing Rabid Brewing’s bar early in February are,
from left, Vince Kempe, Ben Rodenberg, Jared
Cichon and Tobias Cichon. The bar was acquired
from the site of Homewood’s Tavern in the Woods
restaurant before it was demolished recently.

(Provided photo)

A homegrown craft brewery took another step toward becoming a reality Tuesday, March 22, when the Homewood Board of Trustees approved a special use permit for its operation on the village's east side.

  Rabid Brewing’s owners
  Tobias Cichon and his wife,
  Raiye Rosado, address
  the Homewood Village Board
  on Tuesday in support of their
  application for a special use
  permit for their craft brewery.

  (Photo by Quincy Crump/
  H-F Chronicle)

Rabid Brewing at 17759 Bretz Drive has been in development since last fall. Owners Tobias Cichon and Raiye Rosado have been acquiring brewing equipment and installed a bar they obtained from the former Tavern in the Woods.

Tuesday they cleared another hurdle with the approval of the special use permit. Rosado  told trustees the company has a few more hurdles to get over — a building permit so they can start the build-out on the brewery and tap room and federal licensing so they can start brewing beer. 

"We're hoping we can be open early in the summer and that we can participate in the festivals and all of the fun there is to be had in Homewood," Rosado said.

One festival on the couple's radar in particular is a Hops in Homewood, a craft beer event being planned by the Southland Chamber of Commerce that will be held in Irwin Park on July 30.

"We signed up for it," Cichon said.

Homewood Economic Development Director Tom Vander Woude said the craft brewery was a good fit for the business park on Bretz Drive, which is zoned for manufacturing but is adjacent to the Halsted retail corridor. 

The village amended its zoning ordinance in January to account for the interest in opening craft breweries here. 

Because breweries include a manufacturing component, Vander Woude said, the village wanted to have some control over where they locate, so the special use permit requirement was instituted.
He said most craft breweries combine beer making and retail service. 

"This brewery will be about half and half," he said, "which in our opinion is perfect for this location."

Related stories:
Homewood will soon have its own craft brewery (H-F Chronicle, Nov. 7, 2015)
Southland Chamber plans beer party at Irwin Park (H-F Chronicle, March 20, 2016)
Zoning amendment opens the door for craft breweries in Homewood (H-F Chronicle, Jan. 13, 2016)
Getting a taste of craft beer made close to home (H-F Chronicle, Jan. 16, 2016)

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