Join with us on our adventure as we build East Alstead's first brewery and what is quite possibly the only off-grid commercial brewery in the United States. We feel that what we brew and how we brew it are equally important. If you would like to help out with this project, contact me at:

The Belgian Mare Says Hello!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Acceptance - Brewery Update

I must first apologize for my erratic posting. The dial-up internet has been nearly functionless the past few days. Thus, I have been unable to post to this blog according to my regular schedule.

From the last post, you are all aware that our brewery design was initially rejected because it called for the brewery to be located on the same tax lot as my residence. However, they did offer to consider our plan further if I sent them our floor plans, site diagrams, and anything I might have regarding the town and state’s position on our plan.

This started a whirlwind of faxing and emailing. I had to quickly draw up a more formal set of plans for the brewery building, scan in our tax map and add in the brewery, and search the town archive for the minutes from our meetings with the town. I also contacted the state for an opinion on my design.

The state responded quickly with an opinion that clearly allowed for our plan. The town even agreed to write a letter that it also regarded the plan as acceptable. This letter would later prove unnecessary, but it is good to know that they were willing to support me.

Having gathered together all of my information, I sent everything to the Alcohol Tax and Trade Bureau and settled in to await an opinion. We tried to avoid discussing our options if the plan were rejected. We did not want to get too far ahead of ourselves.

Surprisingly, we did not have long to wait for an opinion. In fact, the opinion came so quickly I was sure our plan had been rejected. I hesitated to open the email.

Success! Our plan was deemed acceptable! When we apply for our license, we need to include this information. This is a big relief. We were very worried about possibly getting approved now only to have policy change by the time we completed the brewery and applied for the actual federal license. So the fact that they accepted the plan and gave us an official date of acceptance has allayed our fears.

Where we sit now is that the federal, state and town officials have accepted our plan. The next step it to get the building permits and start digging!

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