So what got us here!
Well it was 2007, Christmas, and I happen to mention, in causal conversation, that I wanted to try to brew beer at home. Wouldn’t you know it I received a Mr. Beer Kit for Christmas. Of course this is not what I had in mind but ok it was a gift after all. So in and early 2008 I brewed my first beer. It was not horrible, not great but it was beer and I made it. That was it, I was hooked.
I immediately put the Mr. Beer Kit away for good and bought a proper kit from my local Home Brew Shop. I proceeded to brew a few batches on the stove and these beers were way better, good enough to have friends try them out. I remember them saying, after a long pause, “You made this?” while immediately going in for another sip. (Insider secret, if someone tells you they like your beer and it takes them two hours to choke it down, they might not be telling you the whole story).
Life gets in the way.
So wouldn’t you know it after about two consecutive batches, my unit calls (Army), “SSG Fortin check your mil.mail, you have orders to Iraq”. I must confess here that I DID want to go, I know it seems strange but I did want to serve our country in a more direct way, and this seemed to be a very direct way. So in May 2008 I left for training. Every deploying Soldier or unit gets additional training before entering an active sustainment / combat zone. So I decided to buy some books for all that hurry up and wait everyone hears about, well the wait part was not over estimated to be clear, so I read some books, lots of them. Yes, they were all about brewing beer, equipment hops, grains, water profiles, fermentation, and recipe creation, needless to say I had to time to re-read these books a few times.
Ok fast forward to summer of 2009, I am back in the good ole US of A, armed with tons of knowledge but little practical experience, so time to get practicing. This where I often say that the beer brewing hobby is a sickness. Yeah, I bought a lot of Brew stuff, kept perfecting the craft, and yeah got deployed to Iraq again 9 months later but eventually I came home. So the next chapter in life and 14 years of recipe creation and buying more equipment (the sickness), its time to see how to make this dream happen. If you ever want to bore yourself to sleep, I have a youtube channel that shows me from early on to today on the 14 year journey. This 11 year video blog on youtube, (link here), is where you can see the equipment and techniques evolve over time. What was good info 10 years ago might be all wrong today as the beer science improves. Some of the content on the channel makes me cringe today but it’s what we thought we knew back then. It’s a community of Brewers like us who keep pushing the styles and science all striving to make and serve a better beer, that is how this industry remains relevant. If you are interested in brewing beer at home a good group to start with is an online home brew club called Brewtubers. Brewtubers home brew club are on the cutting edge of new ideas and collaboration. If you are a home brewer go check them out. Brewtubers.com
Welcome to our journey, we hope you love our beers as much as we do! The videos below chronicle the brewery opening process, if you are interested. I will say out of the 3 business I have previously started/owned, this project is the most complex and expensive adventure yet. We hope you enjoy our efforts, Cheers!