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Other than Brewing => The Pub => Topic started by: majorvices on February 19, 2011, 01:27:03 PM

Title: My brewery
Post by: majorvices on February 19, 2011, 01:27:03 PM
A few of you had PM'ed me over the last few months and asked to see some progress on the brewery. I finally have gotten time to upload some photos (which wasn't an easy task on dial up) - I wanted to make sure I showed you guys what we have done though while it is still like a big home brewery set up. Itss a really small brewery right now, but it is amazing how much beer we are actually able to get out the door. We have some 3bbl fermenters that will be here in a couple of weeks and we are hoping to be able to grow into a 6bbl brewery (back to back 3 bbl brewhouse) by sometime this summer.

A shot from the front:
(http://i281.photobucket.com/albums/kk236/majorvices_photo/IMG_0713.jpg)

Office (I know, not impressive but I wanted to show off the "Damnation" bottle.  :D
(http://i281.photobucket.com/albums/kk236/majorvices_photo/IMG_0722.jpg)

Wet area and brew rig with keg cleaning set-up (note old homebrew kettle in foreground - aka "pilot system"  ;D
(http://i281.photobucket.com/albums/kk236/majorvices_photo/IMG_0714.jpg)

Keg cleaning
(http://i281.photobucket.com/albums/kk236/majorvices_photo/IMG_0715.jpg)

Brew rig - 55 gallon Blichmanns
(http://i281.photobucket.com/albums/kk236/majorvices_photo/IMG_0731.jpg)

Brew dog (cold room and partner in background)
(http://i281.photobucket.com/albums/kk236/majorvices_photo/IMG_0727.jpg)

Fermenters - 42 gallon conicals
(http://i281.photobucket.com/albums/kk236/majorvices_photo/IMG_0716.jpg)

Inside cold room; bright tanks being charged
(http://i281.photobucket.com/albums/kk236/majorvices_photo/IMG_0717.jpg)

Kegs waiting to be filled
(http://i281.photobucket.com/albums/kk236/majorvices_photo/IMG_0726.jpg)

Keg
(http://i281.photobucket.com/albums/kk236/majorvices_photo/IMG_0719.jpg)
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: tumarkin on February 19, 2011, 01:32:31 PM
Thanks for the tour! Looks great!!
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: Mark G on February 19, 2011, 01:57:32 PM
Looks beautiful to me!
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: pinnah on February 19, 2011, 02:25:12 PM
Super cool to see it all, thanks for the tour!

Gotta love a job were you can wear yer rubber boots! ;D

Are you just making the IPA right now?
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: MrNate on February 19, 2011, 02:59:56 PM
I like how the logo turned out, too.
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: majorvices on February 19, 2011, 03:07:51 PM
Super cool to see it all, thanks for the tour!

Gotta love a job were you can wear yer rubber boots! ;D

Are you just making the IPA right now?


Thanks. We have a Belgian White, a Belgian Tripel, a German Alt and the IPA that we put on regular. Then we have a few side batches we put out from time to time.

While its not updated to include all our beers or locations, here's the website: www.yellowhammerbrewery.com
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: hopfenundmalz on February 19, 2011, 03:12:10 PM
A blue cooler would disappear in your wet room.

Like the logo. 
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: denny on February 19, 2011, 03:57:10 PM
Home away from home, huh, Keith?  FWIW, your operation looks a LOT like what Ninkasi looked like when they started up.  Considering how they've grown, I'd say it bodes well for you guys.
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: tubercle on February 19, 2011, 04:02:45 PM
Absolutely fabulous ;D
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: euge on February 19, 2011, 07:17:51 PM
Livin' the dream...

Looks like you left yourself plenty of room to grow. Nice setup. And I like this pic especially for some reason... It's like a home-brewery on steroids.

(http://i281.photobucket.com/albums/kk236/majorvices_photo/IMG_0716.jpg)
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: Pawtucket Patriot on February 19, 2011, 08:51:26 PM
Very cool, Keith!  Looks like a great space with room to grow.
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: akr71 on February 19, 2011, 09:02:21 PM
I like how the logo turned out, too.

I like how the logo on the keg has seen some wear and tear, been thru the brewery and back a few times.
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: chezteth on February 19, 2011, 09:56:57 PM
Very cool!  The logo looks great too!
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: jaybeerman on February 20, 2011, 12:15:19 AM
Been meaning to say this - I looked at your webpage, the beers you choose to make and the places you choose for initial distribution; the wife and I agree, you've nailed it on the head, seriously, perfectly done.  Now that I've looked at your fermentation chambers I'm thinking that's brilliant (doesn't hurt that it's the exact fridge and setup that I use at home though with a smaller fermenter).   I know in our county that I couldn't get away with the same setup because those aren't commercial freezers;  you didn't have any difficultly with regulations?  Anyway, I hope all goes well; it's a rough business but I think you'll do just fine.  cheers, j     
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: Thirsty_Monk on February 20, 2011, 01:05:38 AM
What are your bright tanks from?

By the way your place looks pretty big with plenty of room to expand.

Quote
(http://i281.photobucket.com/albums/kk236/majorvices_photo/IMG_0717.jpg)
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: dannyjed on February 20, 2011, 01:48:41 AM
very nice and i like the way those fermenters fit in there so nice
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: pinnah on February 20, 2011, 02:17:10 AM
Did you paint those kegs?  Errr is that just some industry standard?

I don't know what it is
but black kegs are just cool.  Especially with your logo on there.



BTW, that brew dog looks like it is ready for you to quit taking pics and head out for a walk. ;D
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: a10t2 on February 20, 2011, 02:57:39 AM
Looking good, Keith. I'm jealous of your fermentation temperature control. ::)
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: majorvices on February 20, 2011, 12:50:57 PM

Home away from home, huh, Keith? 

Right now its not much more than 40 hours a week, though I have put a few 60 hours weeks in when need be. I know your reservations on making brewing a living but at this point (so far at least) I have never been so satisfied in my work as I am now. Haven't had even one day where I have "dreaded" going in, and have to force myself to take a few days off (because you could work there forever and never find the end of it!)

 I know in our county that I couldn't get away with the same setup because those aren't commercial freezers;  you didn't have any difficultly with regulations? 

I don't know if they are up to code or not, we had some reservation as well, and when we had the building inspected we had the fermenters out in ambient and never mentioned the freezers.  ;) That said, I would do it much differently now, given hind site. I wouldn't go with anything smaller than 3bbl fermenters.

What are your bright tanks from?

Those bright tanks were picked up from the pharmacy industry. They were a boon, and work great. When we grow larger I think I may use them as brewery serving tanks. Especially if we ever have a tap room or "growler to go" sales.

Did you paint those kegs?  Errr is that just some industry standard?

We got our kegs from here - http://www.plastickegsamerica.com/ - these fit our budget and so far have worked great.
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: bluesman on February 20, 2011, 02:29:35 PM
Truly inspiring for me Keith. Looks quite like I had expected. I figured you would increase your capacity sooner than later because why go through all of the motions more than you have to.

Looks very nice. How many batches do you make in a weeks time?

Congrats!
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: majorvices on February 20, 2011, 02:58:42 PM
Two or three times a week usually. I also brew small batches on the homebrew scale about once every two weeks.
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: bluesman on February 20, 2011, 03:36:45 PM
Two or three times a week usually. I also brew small batches on the homebrew scale about once every two weeks.

I think brewing on a small scale is key for your new development brews.  ;)
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: a10t2 on February 20, 2011, 04:48:39 PM
Don't forget to save your receipts either. All your home brewing supplies are deductible now. ;)
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: beersk on February 20, 2011, 05:49:02 PM
Awesome.  Awesome to the max.
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: tschmidlin on February 20, 2011, 07:21:22 PM
Looks awesome, great stuff!
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: jaybeerman on February 20, 2011, 08:41:30 PM
1. I don't know if they are up to code or not, we had some reservation as well, and when we had the building inspected we had the fermenters out in ambient and never mentioned the freezers.  ;)
2. That said, I would do it much differently now, given hind site. I wouldn't go with anything smaller than 3bbl fermenters.


1. Haha, that always works; until the day that inspectors become brewing experts.  (Then we're all screwed)   
2. I think it might be about getting your foot in the door.  I know of a few local brewpubs that started with 30 gallon batches before making the total transition to 3-1/2 or 7 bbls.  They say the same thing you said (go with 3-1/2 bbls or more) but I'm not sure the local guys would have made it without the slow transition (hard to tell).  cheers, j 
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: tubercle on February 20, 2011, 09:19:56 PM

I don't know if they are up to code or not, we had some reservation as well, and when we had the building inspected we had the fermenters out in ambient and never mentioned the freezers.


 There are no laws or codes that specifies that beer has to ferment within a specified temperature range or at least none I have ever seen. Too warm and the yeast die and too cold they hibernate. So, beer can be legally brewed at ambient temps or controlled to be fermented cooler or warmer, Brew-master's choice.

 If not, then you couldn't have steam beer which are lagers fermented at ale temps or ales that are crash cooled.

  You could use swamp coolers if you wanted to. The inspectors are concerned with consumer (and employee) safety, not the intricate tweaks of your product. Ambient fermented beer doesn't present a hazard, just bad product if not in the proper range.

 Processing meat or produce is different because improper storage, cooking or handling temperature becomes a consumer safety issue.

 And the coolers you are using doesn't endanger the finished product, like its actually coming in contact with the beer, its just controlling the environment around it.

 This is science as Tubercle understands it.
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: dano14041 on February 20, 2011, 09:24:27 PM
Awesome pix! A place with a brew dog has to be a great place to work./be.  :)

Those kegs and the link you posted are fascinating. I wonder how long it will be before homebrewers are using plastic corny kegs.   ;)
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: jaybeerman on February 20, 2011, 09:32:17 PM
There are probably no laws or codes that specifies that beer has to ferment within a specified temperature range or at least none I have ever seen. So, beer can be legally brewed at ambient temps or controlled to be fermented cooler or warmer, Brew-master's choice.

The code refers to using a non-commercial (for home use) fridge/freezer in a commercial setting.  cheers, j
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: tubercle on February 20, 2011, 09:38:20 PM
There are probably no laws or codes that specifies that beer has to ferment within a specified temperature range or at least none I have ever seen. So, beer can be legally brewed at ambient temps or controlled to be fermented cooler or warmer, Brew-master's choice.

The code refers to using a non-commercial (for home use) fridge/freezer in a commercial setting.  cheers, j

 I gotcha'

 Commercial premises require "commercial" equipment.
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: maxieboy on February 20, 2011, 09:42:49 PM
There are probably no laws or codes that specifies that beer has to ferment within a specified temperature range or at least none I have ever seen. So, beer can be legally brewed at ambient temps or controlled to be fermented cooler or warmer, Brew-master's choice.

The code refers to using a non-commercial (for home use) fridge/freezer in a commercial setting.  cheers, j

Other than durability and service life, can't see how it makes a difference. Someone will be along shortly to school me... ;)
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: jaybeerman on February 20, 2011, 10:04:39 PM
The code refers to using a non-commercial (for home use) fridge/freezer in a commercial setting.  cheers, j

Other than durability and service life, can't see how it makes a difference. Someone will be along shortly to school me... ;)

You're correct it doesn't make a difference, it's a stupid rule.  Nevertheless, our local (in many other locations as well) code states that you cannot use a non-commercial (for home use) fridge/freezer in a commercial setting.  They apply this to restaurants, bars and brewery settings alike; just goes with the trade.  cheers, j
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: maxieboy on February 20, 2011, 10:26:37 PM
Got it. Looking good major!
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: oscarvan on February 21, 2011, 05:33:10 AM
Plastic kegs? Try cutting the top out of one of those and lighting a 90,000 btu burner under it.....NO SIR, I DON"T LIKE IT!  ;) ;D
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: majorvices on February 21, 2011, 02:09:29 PM
Plastic kegs? Try cutting the top out of one of those and lighting a 90,000 btu burner under it.....NO SIR, I DON"T LIKE IT!  ;) ;D

Exactly!  ;) Don't be too surprised when, in the next ten years, most breweries will be going to plastic kegs. They have just recently worked out some mechanical issues with them and now more and more breweries are moving in that direction.
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: bluesman on February 21, 2011, 02:45:12 PM
How long did the planning and execution take from the conceptualization to the first day of operation of your brewery?
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: Thirsty_Monk on February 21, 2011, 03:01:14 PM
I am also planning on using them.
Price is right and they do not have SS scrap value.
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: majorvices on February 21, 2011, 05:23:25 PM
How long did the planning and execution take from the conceptualization to the first day of operation of your brewery?

It took us about a year from the very first meeting. Then about 6 months paying rent on the facility until we had the building turned into the brewery, and then it simply took about 2 months waiting before all the legal mumbo-jumbo went through.

I can go ahead and tell you also that it was about an 80K investment just to get up and running. We just recently secured a 50K loan to grow. But we are also making about 5K in sales per month right now on the small system, and in a week or two we should be able to double our capacity. Hell, I might even start making a little pay check soon.  ;)
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: denny on February 21, 2011, 05:33:53 PM

Home away from home, huh, Keith? 

Right now its not much more than 40 hours a week, though I have put a few 60 hours weeks in when need be. I know your reservations on making brewing a living but at this point (so far at least) I have never been so satisfied in my work as I am now. Haven't had even one day where I have "dreaded" going in, and have to force myself to take a few days off (because you could work there forever and never find the end of it!)


Very cool, man.  Glad to hear it.
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: Thirsty_Monk on February 21, 2011, 07:47:46 PM
How long did the planning and execution take from the conceptualization to the first day of operation of your brewery?

It took us about a year from the very first meeting. Then about 6 months paying rent on the facility until we had the building turned into the brewery, and then it simply took about 2 months waiting before all the legal mumbo-jumbo went through.

I can go ahead and tell you also that it was about an 80K investment just to get up and running. We just recently secured a 50K loan to grow. But we are also making about 5K in sales per month right now on the small system, and in a week or two we should be able to double our capacity. Hell, I might even start making a little pay check soon.  ;)
Very cool.
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: bluesman on February 21, 2011, 07:50:01 PM
How long did the planning and execution take from the conceptualization to the first day of operation of your brewery?

It took us about a year from the very first meeting. Then about 6 months paying rent on the facility until we had the building turned into the brewery, and then it simply took about 2 months waiting before all the legal mumbo-jumbo went through.

I can go ahead and tell you also that it was about an 80K investment just to get up and running. We just recently secured a 50K loan to grow. But we are also making about 5K in sales per month right now on the small system, and in a week or two we should be able to double our capacity. Hell, I might even start making a little pay check soon.  ;)
Very cool.

+1

I hope you guys can break on through to the other side.  :)
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: beersk on February 21, 2011, 10:44:36 PM
Plastic kegs? Try cutting the top out of one of those and lighting a 90,000 btu burner under it.....NO SIR, I DON"T LIKE IT!  ;) ;D

Exactly!  ;) Don't be too surprised when, in the next ten years, most breweries will be going to plastic kegs. They have just recently worked out some mechanical issues with them and now more and more breweries are moving in that direction.

Better make sure them's BPA free, yo!
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: weazletoe on February 22, 2011, 03:03:41 AM
Just amazing! I still want to kick you in the coin purse, but still amazing! Congrats man.
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: tubercle on February 22, 2011, 03:57:16 AM
Plastic kegs? Try cutting the top out of one of those and lighting a 90,000 btu burner under it.....NO SIR, I DON"T LIKE IT!  ;) ;D

 Kind of partial to SS myself but I wouldn't mind having one as a fermenter.
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: punatic on February 22, 2011, 06:01:29 AM
A few of you had PM'ed me over the last few months and asked to see some progress on the brewery. I finally have gotten time to upload some photos

Brew dog
(http://i281.photobucket.com/albums/kk236/majorvices_photo/IMG_0727.jpg)


You keep horses in the brewery?
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: Steve on February 22, 2011, 04:17:17 PM
Wet area and brew rig with keg cleaning set-up (note old homebrew kettle in foreground - aka "pilot system"  ;D
(http://i281.photobucket.com/albums/kk236/majorvices_photo/IMG_0714.jpg)

What is the floor of your wet area covered with? blue paint, stretched blue tarps, blue vinyl?
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: majorvices on February 22, 2011, 04:41:28 PM
The blue is the color of the epoxy, the reason it is the color "blue" is because it matches the color of the drapes in the parlor. Maybe we should have consulted Martha Stewart...  ;)
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: Hokerer on February 22, 2011, 04:59:31 PM
The blue is the color of the epoxy, the reason it is the color "blue" is because it matches the color of the drapes in the parlor. Maybe we should have consulted Martha Stewart...  ;)

Plus, the blue color will up your brewery's efficiency just like blue does for coolers.  110% baby !
Title: Re: My brewery
Post by: punatic on February 23, 2011, 02:25:40 AM
The blue is the color of the epoxy, the reason it is the color "blue" is because it matches the color of the drapes in the parlor. Maybe we should have consulted Martha Stewart...  ;)

BLUE MEANIES!

(http://shadowdancer.typepad.com/photos/uncategorized/2008/11/04/other_blue_meanies.jpg)