Industry Hophouse: “It’s all about independent craft beer”

“The beauty of it is it’s one of the best places for just sitting in the window and watching the world go by. Everything just slides past, so you can get lost for an hour with a pint or two.”

For obvious reasons, it hasn’t been the most attractive time to open a new business, never mind a new bar, but tentative green shoots of recovery are beginning to crack the hospitality sector’s surface, and recognising this, Industry Tap owner Darren Filsell decided the time was right to take the plunge and open a second venue next door to a Sheffield legend.

The Industry Tap owner’s latest venture, Industry Hophouse, opened at full capacity when restrictions were lifted back in July, taking its place by the iconic Leadmill venue, having briefly opened as a bottle shop and delivery service during the previous lockdown.

Following a short stint as a Chinese supermarket, the former home of the Norfolk Arms has now been returned to its former glory as a city-centre watering hole, on the corner of Leadmill Road, and Darren has made sure there is a massive range of beers on offer, whether you’re looking for a few pre-Leadmill, warm up bevs, takeout train beers, or you just simply want to sit in the window and watch the world go by.

Its core offering is similar to its precursor, the much-loved Industry Tap, on Sidney Street, but with more of a focus on its extensive range of cans and bottles (they boast three stacked double fridges, as well as shelves full of a variety of beer, whisky and gin), which you can browse at your own leisure.

Darren said: “It’s a sister venue, but ultimately the ethos is the same. It’s all about independent craft beer. The two bars have got slightly different markets; Hophouse is surrounded by student housing, so price is key, and you don’t want to be serving £10 imperials stout on draught, but we will still have imperial stouts in the fridges, if people want them.”

“Hophouse is still a bar, but it doesn’t have the full cellar operation that we have at the Tap. That will probably come later as it’s a cracking space, and a lovely shape. Funnily enough, it happens to be another triangular unit!”

“The beauty of it is it’s one of the best places for just sitting in the window and watching the world go by. Everything just slides past, so you can get lost for an hour with a pint or two.”

Not prone to daydreaming, Darren is already planning the next stage of the bar’s evolution, which will see the introduction of a couple of barbers chairs upstairs, offering patrons a full barber service while they’re stopping in for a crafty pint.

“I’ve always wanted to get a barber in,” says Darren. “I think it would be nice to come along during the daytime to get your hair cut with a nice pint. It’s definitely something I would like to do. To go and get a beard trim and then not have to walk to a pub to get a pint.”

As well as the barbers, Darren is also looking to collaborate with independents in Sheffield to showcase their products in an individual space.

Coffee and indulgent snacks is just one of the avenues he is looking to explore, his future plans include developing the unique basement space downstairs into something that he isn’t quite ready to share… just yet.

“It’s always going to be a business that changes,” explains Darren. “What it is today, is not what it may be tomorrow. You’ve got to adapt, which is a key lesson I think we have all learnt from Covid. I love Sheffield and how the city supports independent business and that’s why I’m opening a second venue here.”

To find out more, go give Industry Hophouse a follow on socials. @industryhophouse

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