Tuesday, January 31, 2012

We're Gonna Need a Bigger Shelf

Three new additions to the bookhoard; Start Your Own Business, Fifth Edition: The Only Start-Up Book You'll Ever Need (Entrepreneur Press), Become Your Own Boss in 12 Months: A Month-by-Month Guide to a Business that Works (M. Emerson) and The Brewers Association's Guide to Starting Your Own Brewery (R. Daniels, editor).

A departure form most of the rest of the hoard being about the business end of things rather than the "Art" end.  Between these three I should have a fairly clear picture of what I need to do to get the brewery up and running.  Not that I think they'll cover everything, or provide me with a magic wand to wave and all my problems will disappear, but it should help me to get over the major hurdles.

Speaking of hurdles I think the biggest one I've found is money, specifically the lack of it.  I know there are loans and grants available from the government, but I'm reluctant to avail myself of them.  Stupid conservative principles.  I've been hearing good things about kickstarter.com, and my friend has suggested that I sell shares.  I'm more likely to go this rout I think, I'm just wary about selling enough shares to raise enough start-up capitol and still maintain control of the company. 

The second largest hurdle is the licensing.  Not so much the federal licensing but the state and local licensing.  It might be easier to start with a brewpub, but that means cooking as well and a kitchen is a great way to turn a large fortune into a small one.  I'm already looking at spending a good deal of time poor, I'd rather not make that a good deal of time broke.  The licensing might be easier but the money and logistics won't be.  On the other hand, locating a space would be harder.  Research and ponderous decisions to follow.

Friday, January 13, 2012

New Additions to the Bookhorde

Some more books that I ordered have come in; Homemade Root Beer and Soda Pop (S. Cresswell), Homemade Soda (A Schloss) and Brewing Up a Business (S. Calagione).  Both the soda books are excellent, though Cresswell's book is a bit more oriented on history techniques and the "why" of soda making, where Schloss' is more about the recipes.  I also noted that many of the recipes in Homemade Soda include options for carbonating with champagne yeast.  W00T!  Real alcopop.  That makes for some interesting possibilities.

Calagione's book is all about how he went from making beer in his garage to running the Dogfish Head Brewery.  Inspiring, and by all accounts, a good place for a burgeoning entrepreneur to start their climb up the great tree of capitalism.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

New Additions

More stuff for the bookhoard. I picvked up The Compleat Meadmaker (K. Schramm) and The Great American Beer Book (J. Robertson). Schramm is touted as the definitive name in Meadmaking, and the book is easy to read and covers a breadth of meadmaking topics.

The Beer Book OTOH is a bit dated, but contains descriptions of and names of a tremendous number of beers and breweries including histories and even gossip. Also includes suggestions on how to rate and compare beers, and a history of beer. Lots of illustrations and even color plates. Not bad for a 30+ year old book that cost me 50¢.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

New Equipment

Obtained 15 gallon keggle with false bottom and thermoport for ruinious cost. Gonna have to learn to do this stuff myself. Also picked up a chinois and a seive for a decent price.

Things to get:
steel-cutting sawsall blades
steel files
steel-cutting drill bits
three more Keggles / kegs
oxy/acetylene welding rig
a county mile of copper pipe and fittings
a burner and propane rig
brew stand
another country mile of low pressure gas lines and fittings
a place to keep it all
more books on how to do this

The First Step

Been homebrewing for a little while, made some tasty brews, a batch or three of damnfine mead and even some extremely good soda. Decided to see if I can make a go of it as a business. Be a lot of work, but work you love doing is no work a'tall. I think I'll call it "The Midgarð Brewing Company".

Ordered some books to get a better idea of what'll be needed; The Home Brewer's Companion (C. Papazian), Home Brewer's Gold (C. Papazian), How to Build a Small Brewery: Draft Beer in Ten Days (B. Owens), Brew Ware: How to Find, Adapt & Build Home Brewing Equipment (K. Lutzen & M. Stevens). These additions to my brewing bookhoard will make my job that much easier.

I wonder if I need a partner to juggle the financial end of things. Gonna have to start looking into a space. Need more books, need equipment, need to think this through about a hundred times. Cannae afford to make a mistake. Whelp, win or lose, it'll be an adventure.

About Me

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Anchorage, Alaska, United States
I've always liked to work with my hands. A while ago, I discovered that the world was short of people who handcrafted leather, made furniture and equipment for those in the Lifestyle and who had both the foresight to think of their patrons and the willingness to make their products affordable.