January 10, 2017
Deal Watch Today

Craft suds joining crab cakes at Bradley

PHOTO | Contributed
PHOTO | Contributed
Kevin Dillon is the executive director of Connecticut Airport Authority.

Air travelers to and from Connecticut's flagship airport have recently gotten two new spaces in which to relax and refuel, and soon will have a third.

On top of the high-end Escape Lounge that debuted at Windsor Locks' Bradley International Airport in late October, Phillips Seafood has since opened a restaurant in one of Bradley's two gate concourses, Kevin Dillon, executive director of the Connecticut Airport Authority said Tuesday. The authority oversees all the state's airports.

In addition, a Stratford craft-beer maker, Two Roads Brewery, is partnering with Bradley's master concessionaire, McDonald's, to open a 30-seat tap room in the same concourse leading to gates for Delta, JetBlue and Southwest, officials said. McDonald's, too, has a food venue at Bradley.

Two Roads founder Brad Hittle confirmed that work on the approximately 1,200-square-foot tap room is underway, with opening set for April.

Two Roads' tap room will occupy space that was formerly the Locks Landing bar/restaurant, Dillon said. It will offer a limited bar-food menu. Two Roads' concession partner, Michell Bradley, is investing about $170,000 to open the tap room, Dillon said.

With at least four brewers in its Hartford area backyard -- Hartford's City Steam Brewery Cafe, Hog River Brewery and Hanging Hills Brewing Co.; Bloomfield's Thomas Hooker Brewery – why enlist a downstate brewer to fill the concession space?

"We felt [Two Roads] represents a local flavor here,'' Dillon told Deal Watch Today. "That's what we've been trying to bring to the airport, a good mix of national, regional and local.''

Bradley and its master concessionaire are exploring more retail-food offerings for its two existing concourses, Dillon said. He declined to identify them or a timetable for their debut.

"It's something we're constantly looking at,'' he said.

Based in Maryland, Phillips Foods, parent of Phillips Seafood Restaurants, is a mid-Atlantic regional brand with a nearly national reputation for its fresh seafood offerings, including its renowned crab cakes. Phillips also has restaurants in several airport concourses, mainly along the East Coast.

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