Tour de Waterloo Singlespeed Brewery

Singlespeed beer is available in growlers from the bar.

How often is the sequel bigger than the original? I guess in Hollywood, often. How about in breweries? In the case of Singlespeed Brewery in Cedar Falls, Iowa, its sequel produces seven times as much beer as the original.

The nanobrewery opened in 2012. Singlespeed opened as a 3 BBL operation. They produce three barrels of beer or three kegs. A barrel produces about 31 gallons, about the size of a full keg. Kegs are often sold in half sizes (15.5 gallons) or smaller.

The brewery uses a bicycling theme at its breweries. The founder developed his idea for Singlespeed during group bicycle rides.

Singlespeed enjoyed success with its Cedar Falls location. The brewery offers a full menu to go along with its interesting beer selections, such as Tip the Cow (a cocoa espresso stout), Tricycle (cream ale) and Saison de Waterloo (a farmhouse ale based on the Belgian city).

Singlespeed’s leadership decided they should expand the brewery. The former Hostess Bakery plant in Waterloo became the second location. The plant closed a few years ago after Hostess declared bankruptcy and sold off its assets. The Waterloo brewery open in the fall of 2016. Remnants of the Hostess plant are seen around the building.

Singlespeed is located in an old Hostess Bakery plant.

The Waterloo location produces a variety of beer with its 20 BBL system. The new brewery added more than 600 gallons to the Singlespeed inventory. Singlespeed is sold in various keg sizes, so the company can spread the love to different bars and pubs. The company doesn’t bottle or can its beer.

Packed and ready to go.

We took a tour of the Waterloo location and got an upclose look at the brewing process. From the malts and hops the company uses to its fermentation process, Singlespeed’s Waterloo brewer let us follow the system.

Beer is produced in a 20-barrel system.

Following the tour, we bought a flight of beer to taste. We chose Tip the Cow, Tricycle, Cargo Shorts (a slightly sour beer) and Beer Mile ’17 (American blonde ale). They each had a good taste. I’m not a stout fan, but I enjoyed Tip the Cow. Tricycle reminded me of a German beer, while Cargo Shorts had a nice taste, with a hint of sour. Beer Mile ’17 was a decent ale.

Each beer had a unique flavor.

The Waterloo location also offers a full menu, so visitors can grab some food with their drink. A group of bicyclists was doing just that during our visit.

The restaurant area.

Singlespeed in Waterloo is an open area, with a small gift shop near the entrance. The restaurant setting is decently sized, with tables and booths. It is separated from the bar area with a wall. The bar is open with long tables, as well as a play area for children.

Singlespeed’s bar area.

Bicyclists can park their bikes inside the bar. A set of tools is available if someone needs to work a bicycle.

Valet parking?

We enjoyed our tour of Singlespeed’s Waterloo brewery. We recommend taking the free 30-minute tour when in the area. You need to register for a tour on their website prior to attending. It took us a couple of minutes to do.

For more information on Singlespeed, please visit or