Every brewery has its own personality, but certain things remain consistent across the spectrum. The familiar sight of silver tanks, kegs, hoses strewn across the floor and the air thick with the smell of grains are all familiar territory for breweries. Illuminated Brew Works in Chicago’s West Loop measures up in all of these ways, but few others lurk below ground-level of the city’s streets in such fitting fashion. Through the fire-engine red doors, down the red cast iron staircase, through a dark, sparsely lit hallway and into a dimly lit underground lair is where co-founders Brian Buckman and Matt Shirley have built a home, literally from the ground up, for their urban farmhouse beer.
Brian came up with the name, an homage to turn-of the century fraternal organizations and their iconography, an influence well reflected in their logo. Not only did the concept of fraternity and family inspire the branding, it has been the philosophy that both Brian and Matt have used to organically grow their business rapidly in just three years in operation, keeping everything from maintenance, graphic design, funding and landing the lease for their facility in the family…. Read More