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My brewery/brewpub

If you have been reading this blog for any period of time you should know that want to start a brewery or brewpub with my good buddy Pete. It has been something that has consumed my mind for longer than any single idea/dream ever has. The only thing that has been in my head on a more constant basis is my wife (awwwe). And according to Stuff White People Like “most white people want to open a microbrewery at some point.¬† One that uses organic hops.” I don’t know about the organic hops part, but the first part of that statement is true for me.

I have been reading The Brewers Association’s Guide to Starting Your Own Brewery since I got it back in early January. While a book does not give you everything you need, it surely has helped me in thinking about what I need to do to make this dream a reality. I also read Brewing Up a Business and Beer School which have also been very useful. I think I could handle the beer part and even create a “culture” for my business, but connecting all of the dots seems like a task.

The other thing that you need to look at is the numbers. According to the Brewers Association figures, for every brewpub that closes 1.3 opens. Not exactly encouraging figures, but I’m guess a lot of that is do to the harshness of the restaurant business as a restaurant with a brewery on premises closes at one tenth the rate of a restaurant without one. Promising! Microbreweries have a much better outlook. For each one that closes 3.7 have opened on average for the past 3 years. I kind of want to go the route of Dogfish Head and start with a brewpub and get all of the kinks worked out and have a reliable product and steady cash flow to support opening a full scale brewery.

I am also encouraged by guys like Monday Night Brewery who were a group of friends who loved beer and decided to start a brewery with a unique style. Their blog is fairly hilarious as well and they also drop lots of great information on starting a brewery and the like. One of my favorite breweries back home is Victory, which I can actually purchase in Lubbock (score). They have grown by leaps and bounds and they started as two college roommates who loved beer. Much like Pete and myself I might add.

My brewery or brewpub is still very much a pipe dream at this point, but I think I am going to start posting about my thoughts and ideas on it here and get some feedback. Even if I don’t get feedback it will give me a place to put down all of my ideas and allow me to develop my dream a bit more. Also writing it down helps it become more real in a sense.

Lots of reading to do

Santa brought me lots of fun reading material this year. My beer book related collection almost doubled in size this winter. To start out with I picked up a copy of the Naked Pint, which I am about halfway through so far. I am really enjoying it an it has made me think about a bunch of stuff that  I can talk about on this blog that I have been missing out on. The second book that I received is homebrewing related, and a book that I have longed for since I started doing all grain brewing. Designing Great Beers is the name of the book and it takes the science of homebrewing to a whole new level. There are charts, graphs, and lots of helpful information scattered through the almost 400 pages.

Another addition to my homebrewing book collection is Radical Brewing which is another book that I have wanted for a bit of time. There are lots of fun tidbits in there and a lot of interesting information. The final book that I received was The Brewers Association’s Guide to Starting Your Own Brewery. Essentially it is a collection of magazine articles from the Brewers Association publication called The New Brewer. There is a lot of great information in the book and encompasses everything from a business plan to staffing options. Being that I (and every other homebrewer) want to open my own brewery or brewpub one day, it is a great resource.