OCEAN CITY — The man who owns Pickles Pub and Hammerhead’s bar is not only bringing a brewery to the Boardwalk, he’s also inviting the public to help design his company logo.
Danny Robinson said construction starts soon on his brewery, Shorebilly Brewing Co., at 10th Street on the Boardwalk, at the site of what’s now an ice cream shop. It will be the only brewpub in Ocean City proper.
“This area is already known for great beer,” he said. “If we can say, ‘Hey, this is brewed only a few blocks from here,’ bars will be anxious to get this on their taps. It will be available in as many places as I can get it.”
So far, he’s having a pilot brewing system built in St. Michaels. When it arrives, he and his brewmaster will experiment with different flavors. They will brew year-round; whether the bar is open year-round remains to be seen.
“The market’s going to decide what the people like and … want. We’ll make whatever,” he said.
He’s having a logo contest, and wants Shorebilly brand beer to be as identifiable to Ocean City as Thrasher’s French Fries. The contest is happening only on the company’s Facebook page, www.facebook.com/shorebillybeer. A popular vote determines the winner. There will be prizes for contestants, such as surfboards and skateboards.
“Hopefully, whoever comes up with this logo we’re going to use; it’s going to be on bottles for 100 years. It’s not just a gimmick. I absolutely want to be serious. Ocean City deserves to have their own beer,” he said.
He’s waiting on permits, so construction should start in early October. Robinson said he will put a webcam inside the brewery when construction begins and will solicit comments and input about how it should be built.
“Every step of the process will be community participation,” he said.
Beer served at the Boardwalk will be brewed on site. Any additional beer that ends up on taps throughout town will have to be brewed off site. Robinson also owns Pickles Pub at Eighth Street, Guido’s Burritos on the Boardwalk and the adjacent Hammerhead’s bar. Shorebilly beer will be served at each.
Another interesting selling point may come in the packaging.
Robinson said he hopes to brew and sell his beer in cone-top aluminum cans. They’ll look like the Tin Man’s head, and come with a bottle cap instead of a pull tab. Robinson said they haven’t been in use since the 1940s.
“You gotta differentiate yourself somehow,” he said.
Glenn Irwin, executive director of the Ocean City Development Corp., thinks it’s a smart idea to have a beer connected with Ocean City.
“From a marketing perspective, all you need to do is look at Berlin and Burley Oak. It’s a good marketing tool. I’m surprised it’s taken this long,” he said.