SingleSpeed Brewing Company is chock-full of historic character, ice-cold beer and mouthwatering food. While each of its three Iowa locations is different in its own way, the SingleSpeed vibe and culture is constant throughout.
The concept of SingleSpeed Brewing Company was inspired during a Wednesday night bike ride with the founder, Dave Morgan. SingleSpeed–a name inspired by its origin story–opened its first taproom on Main Street in Cedar Falls in 2012, expanded into Downtown Waterloo in 2017 and, most recently, opened its third location in Des Moines. The Waterloo locale is by far the largest with a 20-barrel brewing system, in comparison to Cedar Falls’ three barrels and Des Moines’ five barrels.
Walking into the SingleSpeed Waterloo, you will notice the sheer size of the 30,000-sq.-ft. facility, which is previously home to the Hostess Wonder Bread factory. The space is large, but not intimidating, and industrial yet modern. There are a variety of areas to dine and drink: the dining room with standard tables and booths, the beer hall with long community tables, a flexible seating area with TV’s and games for kids and, lastly, the expansive patio with picnic bench and high-top seating. There is no shortage of natural light making anywhere inside, or out, of SingleSpeed an inviting and uplifting space.
SingleSpeed lives by three pillars: Beer, Sustainability and Community. Let’s touch on each!
Having nearly 30 beers on tap, there’s something for everybody from its current best-seller Gable (Munich Helles) to Ring Around the Gose (passionfruit/pink guava gose) to Whirled Wide Haze (New England IPA). Enjoy a cold one by the pint or customize a $10 flight which includes four 4-oz. pours. Beer isn’t the only star of the show at SingleSpeed; its food menu includes an array of appetizers, burgers, tacos, salads, wings, flatbreads and entrees. Customer favorites include the Amish pretzel, which is structured more like a cinnamon roll compared to the traditional pretzel knot. It is perfectly soft, salted and paired with a pimento beer cheese or house mustard. Other popular dishes include street tacos, the Umami burger and fish and chips. And what’s a good entree without a delicious side? Take SingleSpeed’s brussels sprouts as an example, topped with peanuts, hoisin and cilantro.
Not visible from the street are several rooftop solar panels. Thanks to the panels, the taproom is able to offset nearly 100 percent of its brewing operations. SingleSpeed even gained LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Certification status of Gold in 2017. As mentioned, the space was formerly the Hostess Wonder Bread factory and with the assistance from the State Historic Preservation Office, a lot of the factory’s charm and structures remain at the Waterloo brewery–all the way down to the bakery proofing doors being used as women’s restroom stall doors!
SingleSpeed wraps its arms around all of the communities it is a part of, with its give-back program titled “Switchback.” SingleSpeed’s giving can be in the form of a donation request, partnership proposal or providing free space to nonprofits on Mondays at the Waterloo taproom.
For more information about SingleSpeed Brewing Company, visit www.singlespeedbrewing.com.
325 Commercial St.
Waterloo, IA 50701
Photo credit: Elliot Tensen