The popular beach brewery Mad Beach Craft Brewing Company – featuring a massive list of creative beers and one of the most inventive kitchens around – is bringing its flavor and personality to the ‘Burg. The new concept called ‘Sesh’ will be located in the historic Earl Gresh cottage at 2221 4th Street North, most recently the home of The Melting Pot.
The brewpub released updated renderings of what the new concept will look like, as demo and construction on the building began last year. The two buildings will be restored to their former glory, complete with a beautiful new beer garden and a brewing facility inside, with an opening date likely to come early 2023.
As for the offerings of Sesh itself, ownership plans to bring along several favorites from Mad Beach, such as the crowd favorite Jelly Donut Burger (Angus Ground Chuck burger with raspberry jam, crispy bacon and two slices of sharp cheddar sandwiched between two glazed donuts, garnished with powdered sugar). However, they plan to expand the menu even further to make sure there’s something for everybody, given the variety of people in the area around the location.
On the beer side of the business, the back half of the original building will house the brewing and production facilities, where Sesh plans to keep the creative brews flowing. Mad Beach Craft Brewing Company features 28 rotating taps of beer, cider and sangria, and similar offerings can be expected at Sesh. Additionally, the restaurant plans to have a full bar including liquor and wine, giving them the opportunity to have some fun with a cocktail menu, too.
One of St. Pete’s most ‘haunted’ buildings will honor its roots
Leadership at Mad Beach has wanted to open a St. Pete location for years, so when the historic building in a prime location became available, they jumped on their chance. In fact, several businesses jumped at the chance, but the city balked at the plans of some to tear down the old museum and roadside attraction designed to look like an English cottage.
In a deal brokered by Steve Coderre of Coderre Real Estate and Development, Mad Beach Craft Brewing bought the property with plans to not only keep the building intact, but to make its history a central feature of the new brewery and restaurant.
Chief among the historic touches is the massive brick chimney built into the wall of the main dining room, which Sesh is uncovering and showcasing after it had been paneled over by previous ownership. The chimney itself was built in the 1930s with bricks from Fort Dade, the ruined military fort built on Egmont Key during the Spanish-American War.
Owner Matt Powers said they also have plans to bring a gigantic and supposedly haunted old mirror from the back room into the main bar. Staff members of the various businesses housed in the building over the decades have sworn to mystery handprints appearing on the glass after they would walk away from the mirror. In fact, a local group of ghost hunters even made the trek to see the mirror and the cottage for themselves, claiming they found a few energies in the building, but that “they were all quite friendly.”
Demo is currently underway inside as Sesh restores (and expands upon) the building’s grandeur. Part of those plans include a combo indoor/outdoor bar facing 4th Street with an expanded patio wrapping around behind the chimney in the open outdoor area of the U-shaped structure. The back half of the building was the original structure housing Earl Gresh’s wood museum, before being expanded shortly after to the massive “cottage” now standing on the property.
“We want to pay our respect to the history of the building, while adding our own touch of color,” Powers said. “We love the property. You walk in the door and it just looks like a pub.”
Read more about the history of the building here.
The reason for the name Sesh
The name Sesh comes from the annual 420 Sesh party at Mad Beach, a celebration of all things tasty and fun. The event has inspired a number of past creations, including the introduction of Flamin’ Hot Cheetos crusted cheese sticks.
Ultimately, Powers said, it’s all about having great food and drink with friends and family. Put simply, he hopes that Sesh will give St. Pete a place they can be surrounded by history, while enjoying themselves in the present.
“A ‘sesh’ is just defined as a period of time spent enjoying an activity with friends,” Powers explained.
St. Pete can now expect plenty such instances, starting as soon as early 2023.
What to read next:
- ‘Burg Guides: Best breweries in St. Pete
- The best Oktoberfest celebrations in St. Pete this fall
- ‘Burg History: This English Cottage on 4th Street used to be the famed Wood Parade
- A wild milkshake bar, ‘The Yard,’ opens this October in downtown