In 1996, Thomas Kennedy opened Hat City Ale House at 253 Main Street as a nightlife pub in CityCenter Danbury’s Dining & Entertainment District. While featuring live music and over 100 different beers, there were also cigars, cigar lockers, and a seating area devoted to cigars.
In 2003, Connecticut revised the Clean Indoor Air Act to restrict smoking in all Restaurants and bars with an exception for Cigar Bars. A cigar bar had to meet certain sales thresholds for the calendar year 2002 and could allow smoking on the premises. Hat City Ale House met this requirement and the Danbury Health department acknowledged this fact.