Sneak Preview of the Bankhead Brewery in Rowlett

Located on Main Street next to what will soon become the Village of Rowlett, this soon to open microbrewery and restaurant is sure to be a winner.  The owner is Kevin Lefere, who also owns Zanata, a popular Rockwall eatery.


Our preview tour was conducted by John Fox, overseer of construction. Some of the features he was proud to point out were the unusual and very attractive design on the concrete floor, the copper facing on the bar and the wall utilizing bricks from the old firehouse that once stood on the property. Perched in the middle of the bar is a grill and headlights of a Model T Ford.


The reason for the Model T grill relates to the name of the establishment. The Bankhead Highway ran through Rowlett in 1916, when the Model T was king of the road. The road got its name from John H. Bankhead, U.S. Senator from Alabama. Bankhead was instrumental in passing legislation to enact this first cross country highway, which was also the first federally funded highway in the country.


We didn’t notice any signs of the senator’s daughter, Tallulah Bankhead, star of stage and screen, but we’re sure it will emerge somewhere on the premises.


The towering stainless steel tanks of the brewery stand on one end of the building, but the majority of floor space is occupied by the bar and restaurant. There are 2 pizza ovens and Fox told us there will be an upscale pub menu, full bar and service at an outside patio.  From the purse hooks and cell phone connectors within easy reach from every stool at the long bar, the unique light fixtures and artwork on the banquettes, there is a definite WOW factor in the decor.


We were invited back to take another look prior to the planned opening on or near the Labor Day weekend. There will soon be 450 new residential units in the adjacent Rowlett Village ready for occupancy by next June, according to current projections. Literally located next door to that new development, the Bankhead Brewery is certain to be a success.


Nancy Ghirla