Taking a step Backcountry: Frisco brewery owner reflects on sale to Broken Compass
November 1, 2017
To hear the former owner of Frisco's Backcountry Brewery talk about selling the restaurant and brewpub, it appears the timing was right and he's happy to leave the business with people who know good beer.
The Backcountry Brewery at 720 Main St. first opened on the corner of Main Street and Summit Boulevard in 1996. Charlie Eazor bought the business with his brother, Joe, in 2010, and they have operated the restaurant and brewery there ever since.
There's nothing quite like the second-floor establishment that sits at such a prominent location — the intersection of Frisco's two most-traveled thoroughfares — with unobstructed views of Lake Dillon and the nearby mountains, Eazor said.
The restaurant can seat more than 200 people upstairs, he continued, adding that during the busiest times of the year, Backcountry Brewery can serve up to 14,000 meals in a single month.
However, the brewery and restaurant closed its doors Tuesday, and there's no telling when, or how, it might reopen, because Eazor and the owners of Broken Compass Brewing finalized the sale on the same day by agreeing to transfer all of the Frisco brewery's assets, tangible and intangible, over to the brewmasters from Breckenridge.
"I'm to the point that I wouldn't mind retiring," Eazor said of his reason for selling. "My brother, who's my partner, is CEO of a large private company so he's not interested. Our sons are bright, educated and have their own careers, but neither one of them saw the restaurant and brewery business as their future, so it's just a good time."
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Details of the sale were not released. Reached over the phone Wednesday, Broken Compass co-founder David Axelrod said they're not quite ready to discuss their plans in public just yet, but he expects more information will be forthcoming in the near future.
For Eazor, the sale just felt right, and it completed the third of three businesses sales he's inked in the last year as he seeks to reduce his professional commitments and boost his free time.
In addition to Backcountry Brewery, Eazor and his brother also owned another brewery in Texas, which they sold last May, and The Blue Spruce restaurant at 20 Main St. in Frisco, which they sold last September.
Eazor said they weren't aggressively looking for a buyer for the Frisco brewery when he was selling The Blue Spruce but happened into conversations with Axelrod about Broken Compass taking control of the Backcountry Brewery.
Those discussions came to fruition this week.
"We arrived at a deal that we should execute (Tuesday) to make it official," Eazor said Tuesday morning. "They are the new owners of the business going forward."
Eazor expects the name will change, but he still thinks Broken Compass is a perfect fit to "run with the ball and carry it to the next level."
"The opportunity came along, and it had to be the right buyer, someone who understands the beer business and that has an absolute focus on quality product, not just pumping out a variety of weird concoctions," he said.
Eazor doesn't know exactly what the new owners have planned, but he believes they will take good care of his regular workforce and remains confident Broken Compass is the right brand to leave his business with.
As such, he wishes them the best of luck going forward.
"As far as how they intend to operate or what their concepts will be, I've talked to them several times, and it seems like they have a fairly broad range of scenarios but I don't believe they've really locked into one," Eazor said. "Obviously, they will be brewing beer here, they'll be operating a taproom, and they'll be selling food, but I don't know exactly what the menu will look like."
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