UPDATE: Provisions Market set to open Wednesday, June 5.
Never fully healed from The Bruery Provisions closing this past January, I had all but given up hope of a worthy suitor taking over the quaint spot in historic Old Towne Orange. Losing one’s favorite local craft beer and cheese shop is a tough wound to heal, and I was still stuck somewhere in the seven stages of grief.
Then, a miracle happened: a new sign out front read Provisions Market. I dropped to one knee and held a nearby bench to collect myself. I re-read the sign in disbelief. “It’s here!” I yelled at a confused old couple nearby. “The Haven Collective will surely save us!” To celebrate, I scored some coconut gelato from a nearby cafe and went home to cut the rope hanging in my garage.
Provisions Market, which held a private soft opening last week, makes full use of its space as one part bottle shop, one part tasting room, and one part chef-driven food shop with cheese, charcuterie, snacks and sandwiches. Bruery Provisions’ soul still haunts the digs in a friendly ghost sort of way, leaving thirty taps for the next tenants, partners Wil Dee, Ace Patel and Chef Greg Daniels.
The room is freshly furnished with new seating in the shop area. Bottles sit on the sidelines like wallflowers waiting for a dance partner. As I tip a pint of Trumer Pils, inhaling deep and taking in the evening, I reminisce about all the memories and friendships forged in this room over the years. Thankfully, the new TVs don’t distract me; they’re kept on mute, allowing conversations to flow and sports fans to still track the games.
As an added bonus, Portola Coffee Lab, a local roasting company that just celebrated their second anniversary, will open their second location inside the market.
The partners seem to have a grasp on what the market wants. “The beer scene in Orange was bleak before we moved in,” says Dee. Chef Daniels agrees: “I would sit outside smoking a cigarette while we were building Haven and wonder if people would come.” Now, the area is ripe for a proper beer crawl, with several craft beer friendly restaurants dotting Old Towne’s historic tree-lined streets.
The Haven Collective owns four all-craft beer locations in OC and LA: Haven Gastropub in Orange, Haven Gastropub + Brewery in Pasadena, Taco Asylum in Costa Mesa, and Provisions Market (30 taps, plus a bottle shop and food options). View our Facebook photo album.
Greg Nagel has been a beer fan for over twenty years and recently attended Sierra Nevada Beer Camp (#94 – Sleight of Hand). Follow him on his gonzo beer trail at OCBeerBlog.com and on twitter at @OCBeerBlog