Each day, the air gets colder. The leaves are about to change. Daylight savings time is drawing to a close. We've been working on our brewery for a year now. There are times when it feels like the new brewery will never be done. So why do we feel better than ever? Well, to paraphrase Joyce Carol Oates on the value of perseverance:
"I have forced myself to begin [brewing] when I've been utterly exhausted, when I've felt my soul as thin as a playing card, when nothing has seemed worth enduring for another five minutes... and somehow the activity of [brewing] changes everything."
Ok, we took some liberties with her words, but her point remains, and feels applicable here. We're not sure if Joyce is a beer drinker, but we think she would agree: After a long year of persevering, October will be incredibly rewarding. We think you'll agree too -- read on.
We're happy to say that our new Minneapolis brewery is (partially) licensed and operational! Rumor has is that all four of our tanks are filled with Sweet Child, Libertine, and even Worthy Adversary. We have our TTB (federal) Brewer's Notice, which allows to produce and sell wholesale. So, as soon as our filter arrives in the next couple weeks, we'll be shipping our first kegs out of the new brewery. We're still waiting for our retail license for growlers. We expect to have that and be ready for growler sales and tours by early November. So, even though this is a huge month, next month might be even more fun! But wait, there's still more going on in October...
...after two long years of having nothing but draft beer, we are releasing bottles this month! Starting the week of October 24th, you'll finally be able to pick up six packs of Lonely Blonde and Sweet Child of Vine at liquor store, bars, and restaurants near you. If your local stop doesn't have it, make sure to ask them! We'll do our best to keep up with demand.
In case this all sounds like a lot of work, well it is. But on the spectrum of work, it's way on the good end. Need proof? Check out the fun stuff we get to do in this cool video by our friends at Minneapolis/St. Paul magazine. Need even more proof? Come join us this Sunday at the 1st Annual 12th & Hennepin Block party. The Bullfrog and the all new Butcher and the Boar are putting on the party, and our friends at The4ontheFloor will be headlining the music act.
In our opinion, the entire week leading up to Autumn Brew Review should be a holiday week. Specialty beer tappings abound, we can't stop at a bar without bumping into an old friend, and of course, the actual ABR festival itself culminates an incredible - and exhausting - week. One of the absolute highlights of our week, however, was completely unplanned.
Following a round-table discussion with Hohensteins (our distributor) and representatives from most of the 18 craft brewers in their portfolio, we had the opportunity to take the whole crew on a tour of our new brewery. Brewers, sales reps, founders, and owners from Bell's, Great Lakes, Founders, Left Hand, Big Sky, Furthermore, New Holland, and Two Brothers all came by to check out the brewery--and of course, share a couple pints of Sweet Child of Vine. Our journey from garage to brewery over the last couple years has had its share of "is this really happening?" moments, but this was one of the biggest. Together, these guys brew more in a day than we have in the last year, but far cooler than the volume they account for is how humble, helpful, and fun they all are. Even though we've been in the business for two years now, we still have plenty of questions about what the future holds, so meeting and talking to industry icons was both inspiring and affirming.
In a weird, "things come full circle" way, we looked around the brewery and realized that in our garage brewing days, we washed and stripped labels from every one of these brewers' bottles, in order to bottle our homebrew. Surreal.