Wilmington Coffee Chain, Brewery Growing

by | Jul 24, 2023

Wilmington International Airport

An iconic Wilmington coffeehouse and a popular local brewery are set to grow this year with new locations inside Wilmington International Airport.

Port City Java and Flying Machine Brewing Company are the latest in a string of new food and drink options for the growing number of passengers traveling through ILM. The airport also has plans to add a Jimmy John’s, Dunkin’ and a new convenience store.

The new businesses are all expected to open by the end of 2023, according to Erin McNally, the airport’s marketing, air service development and public relations manager. In an email to the Greater Wilmington Business Journal, McNally noted the new brands will “offer more choices for travelers and an improved customer experience.”

One of two new Port City Java locations is under construction in an area between the airport’s security checkpoint and baggage claim, said company CEO Steve Schnitzler. The airport’s existing cafe operated by Tailwind Hospitality Inc. is set to be rebranded into a Port City Java, which will require some equipment changes along with employee training, new signage and electrical work, Schnitzler said.

Although he said an exact completion date is still “up in the air,” Schnitzler said he expects both locations to open in the near future.

“It’s going to be soon,” he said.

Flying Machine Brewing Company also will have a bar located in the airport terminal, said brewery co-founder Grant Steadman.

The company is still working to finalize details about the new airport location, but Steadman said he sees it as a “great place” to expose both visitors and locals to Flying Machine and to the Cape Fear region’s craft brewing industry as a whole.

Flying Machine already has its main taproom on Randall Parkway in Wilmington and a taproom and restaurant in Wrightsville Beach.

Schnitzler with Port City Java said he’s “extremely excited” about the opportunity to put the chain’s coffee and brand in front of the growing number of people traveling through ILM.

Last month, the airport broke an all-time monthly record with 67,110 outbound passengers. That number was up 36% from June 2022 and exceeded every other recorded month by 25%, an airport spokesperson told the Greater Wilmington Business Journal. The airport broke another record last year when more than 1 million passengers traveled through ILM.

“This will be a great opportunity,” Schnitzler said, “for us to introduce ourselves to folks.”

Correction: This version of the story has been updated to correct the spelling of the company name for Tailwind.

SOURCE: https://www.wilmingtonbiz.com/restaurants/2023/07/24/wilmington_coffee_chain_brewery_to_grow_at_ilm/24660?fbclid=IwAR0S_VYUriWoZ56uhN8bPiGxs_cpmyhIzT45cvjCcxmgbkaGrWGxVSVeGC0