**Industry standard... right?
Hey there cats and kittens! It's been another productive week o' equipment setup around here, also known as "things we're super excited about but which are apparently very very boring to everyone else in the world" (guess how we found that one out). But we are movin' along! Our draft system is rarin' to go, our keg washer is (arguably) operational, and - most importantly - we're just teetering on the cusp* of gettin' our inspections all inspected up, which is the last big step before we get to fire up them kettles! Woo!
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and hot damn is this tangle o' draft lines a sight for sore eyes. Wait, nope, that's just the fuchsia walls** burning out my corneas.
Remember us braggin' about our faucets last week? Well, they're all gussied up and ready to go!
And just for fun, a preview of the tasteful art collection we've curated for the taproom.
*We're waiting on a few small building improvements, which are scheduled for completion on Monday. They've been scheduled for "Monday" for a while now, so we'll see.
**Industry standard... right?
Hello friends! Now that we've finally got all our stuff at the brewery, the past week has been a flurry of frenzied activity - settin' up and testin' out our equipment and prettyin' up the taproom and frantically scrambling to order parts that we neglected to order previously.* It's been a hoot!
You think you'd be set with 1,000 tri-clamps; turns out you need 1,004.
Our sparge arm, cascading water into the (sadly empty) mash tun in the most mesmerizing of ways.
And, man, now that we've got our stuff (mostly) in place and everything is (more or less) put together, the place is startin' to look dang good! It's really real! It's really happening!
Check out them faucets (we even labeled them, just to be thorough)!
Makin' me thirsty just lookin' at 'em!
And so them faucets don't shiver in their birthday suits, our tap handle factory** is back up and running!
*We've made some logistics companies very happy campers this week.
Why don't you pull up a chair and stay for a spell, 'cause this here blog's got some things to tell! When we last met, we promised/predicted that there would be some big* things happening this week, and it turns out that we were right! For starters, we had some unexpected (and frankly a little confusing) progress on prettyin' up the outside of the building:
Believe it or not, it really does spruce up our dirt pile quite nicely.
What's more, now that we've (finally) finished (most of) the construction that we need to do, we were able to move the rest of our stuff in! While we did have the major things in place at the brewery (the fermentors and the brewhouse, primarily), a nontrivial portion of our equipment has been in storage** for the better part of a year. But not anymore! Now we get to sort through*** all our hoses and hydrometers and fun brewery toys - it's like Christmas all over again!
We are now striking a roughly equal ratio of construction-related items to those of the brewing variety.
As we are no longer camping out in the Home Depot parking lot, Fort Growler has been relocated to its permanent home (until we sell them all and buy new ones).
While we are still waiting on our contractors to finish up the electrical and plumbing work needed to make our shiny lil' brewhouse operational, we are hell of close to brewin' up a storm. We've never been so happy to be schlepping boxes around!****
Mash! Tun! Malt! Mill!*****
A surprising amount of water actually landed in the trench drains the first time we hooked up all the valves.
Hmmm why yes I could certainly romance a beer or three in here...
*Well, big-ish, anyway.
**The basement of our house. We have very forgiving roommates.
***This has been harder than one might expect, since the boxes are primarily labeled with cuss words and Spanglish (the rest of them have labels that still aren't quite as specific as you'd hope, like "balls" or "probably hose").
****It is important to note this was accomplished with the generous help of our roommate/landlord, who's probably pretty happy to have the use of the basement in his house back again.
*****We like to give credit to any ideas that are not our own: while the dinos belong to the Bone Up taproom, using them as props was inspired by this far more creative Instagram account.
Howdy ho, camperinos! It's been a bit of a slow week around here, even by our standards: our contractors have been chippin' away at the work we need them to do* (though unfortunately, progress has slowed considerably** on getting the outside of the building presentable) and we've been plown' through them finishing touches on the bar, but ain't much happenin' other than that.
Quality time with the nail gun!
Mostly, we took advantage of the lull*** in our schedules to do some (hopefully tax deductible) market research**** in and around one of the best damn beer cities in the country, but we'll spare that particular slideshow for another time. But we've got big plans unfolding in the near future, so be sure to tune in next week when we'll have real-ass progress***** and updates and all kinds of hootenanny! In the meantime, I need to go lie down because all this market research has left me with one hell of a headache.
*I believe we've used the phrase "slightly more than nothing" to describe this sort of situation in the past.
**Work on that front has been downgraded from "slightly more than nothing" to "actually nothing."
***And, possibly of note, this is roughly the anniversary of a pretty big event that took place last year (I'm referring, obviously, to us getting our TTB approval).
****Drinking. So maybe that would make it "competitive analysis?" Or "networking?" We use these words enough that we should probably eventually learn what they mean.
Hello friends! We've been keepin' our bad selves busy as always - sawin' and hammerin' so much that our lungs are probably half sawdust and stainin' and polyin' so much that we've forgotten what color our hands originally were, all in the name of tryin' to get things spic and span and spiffed up* for that fateful day when we're finally allowed to brew some dang beer!
And speaking of which, we've had some fairly informative talks with the fine folks down in the building department this week, and - as always - it turned out to be a sort of (completely) unexpected good news/bad news scenario. Now, we're a little light on "hard facts" and "reliable details," but if you'll recall from last week, we're waiting on our contractors to finish up** before we can really spring into action. But... things aren't quite that simple (of course they're not, why would they be). Some of y'all might remember a few months ago that our landlord has a bunch of work to do on the outside of the building in order to make it look "presentable" instead of "abandoned-looking" and "surrounded by piles of debris,"*** and as it so happens, that work needs to be completed before we can open to the public.****
If you're familiar with the... leisurely pace that previous construction projects have taken around here, you'll know that this has the potential to be a largish setback for us (though it certainly wouldn't be the first - we're currently on month eleven of construction-related production delays), but there is a silver lining this time! You'll notice that I said we need this work to be done before we can be "open to the public," which means there's a decent chance we'll be able to start brewing before all the work outside gets done!***** This means that we might need to be distribution-only for a little while, which wasn't exactly the target we were aiming for (as you may have guessed from the ninety five consecutive blog posts about how much we love our taproom), but we ain't gonna let a lil' somethin' like that discourage us! We came here to make beer, and make beer we shall! And besides, we're fairly optimistic that the outside renovations could be ready around the same time we are - progress on the lot is already underway, and we did see a pretty promising-looking pile of construction-grade dirt off to the side. But I guess we'll just have to wait and see.
We didn't include a picture of the dirt because we figured there was no possible way you'd need or want to see that. So here's some beer!
*We don't have much by way of in-progress photos this week, partly but not entirely because some recent projects have relied on the phrase "structural duct tape" more than we'd care to admit.
**They're currently in the "do half the work and then disappear without a trace for several weeks" phase that seems to be fairly prevalent in the contractor community.
***Those aren't actually the words that the planning committee used, but they're surprisingly close.
****We thought otherwise until recently, largely because we had been explicitly told otherwise, but that's really neither here nor there.
*****Assuming, of course, our contractors get their collective shit together. But we covered that already.
Jared and Jimbo will tell you some things, sometimes.