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!

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Tun Of Fun & A Real False Bottom

The morning dawned cold and windy, but stayed clear.  I didn't mind the cold and wind as long as things stayed clear.  I had help coming over to move the mashtun stand into the brewery. The last thing I needed was rain and/or snow pelting us as we moved 300 pounds of steel up the ramp into the brewery.  Getting the mashtun stand moved inside and the mashtun in place were the last big equipment-related tasks the brewery needed.  I wanted to make sure they got done before the stand was frozen to the ground and buried under the snow.

Just before the crack of noon my help arrived in the form of my paramedic friend David and his teenage sons Connor and Devin.  David, being an old New Englander, was sporting his insulated Carhartt bibs and fleece jacket.  Devin was modeling his new winter shorts.  For his part, Connor was showing off his new high-tops with 80's RUN-DMC-style giant protruding tounges.  The memories came flooding back.

Not wanting to stand around and get freeze-dried, we went straight to work.  David's sons, being tough no-nonsense types, dispensed with gloves and stepped right in and grabbed the giant metal rack with their bare hands.  These are tough kids.  Slightly shamed, the two old guys in winter clothes each grabbed a corner. By this time Tracy had joined us and she held the door while the four of us wrestled the iron monster into place. Once we cleared the entry, we tipped the rack into the upright position then slid it to its new home next to the boiler. Success!

Now all that remained was to lift the mashtun onto its new rack.  The brewhouse has a good bit of room, but it was still a tight fit to get five people ranged around the mashtun and lift it into place.  I am not sure how we managed, but we did and the mashtun dropped into place on its new rack.  Actually, it didn't drop into place. It got wedged on the angle irons and we had to wiggle things a bit, then it crashed into place.  Success!

A tun of fun:  The mashtun and rack in place.

As David & Sons had not been out to the brewery in a while, they wanted to see the cellar.  So we headed around back. After a quick tour of the cellar, I noticed both Connor and Devin had turned a pale shade of blue that was deepening to an emerald hue before my eyes.  Aware of their immunity to low temperatures, I deduced that they were in an advanced state of hunger from having not yet eaten lunch.  Knowing I would probably require their services in the future, I thought it best to thank them and send them on their way before full on starvation set in.  David wished to stay a bit longer, enjoy the fresh breeze and sunshine, and discuss Aristotelian politics.  However, he too noticed that his two sons were looking a little hungry and thought it best to get them back home.

So with a round of thank-yous and a wave the Hogan clan went on their way.

Later, just before sunset, I would have some time to get started on the false bottom for the mashtun.  I am constructing this of top grade white oak with stainless steel fittings.  It is not done yet, I need to drill the drain holes, but it is already a real beauty!


The real false bottom, ready for drilling!

Sunday, November 17, 2013


With the federal forms having been submitted, finishing up the brewery has been the focus.  This week racks were the order of the day.  Mash tun racks and fermenter racks to be exact.  On Saturday morning we picked up the mash tun rack from the welder.  Perley did an excellent job.  The rack is very sturdy and more than adequate to the task of holding the mash tun.  All it needs is a couple coats of paint and it will be ready to go.

The new mash tun stand ready for painting.

The next task was building the rack for the fermenters. Since we are still not sure exactly how we want to configure the fermenters, I only made the rack large enough to hold two fermenters.  That way we can work out exactly how we want to set things up then build a rack that runs the whole width of the cellar. 

The fermenter rack in place in the cellar.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Paperwork & Reflections

The federal paperwork is in!  Now a little time to relax the eyes, then move on to the state side of things. We are by no means done yet, who knows what glitches could still arise in the paperwork process, but it feels good just to have something in.  I am also trying to finish up on the last of the construction (tank racks, etc.).
So I still have a lot to do before we are selling brew, but we are getting closer and can finally see some sort of light at the end of the tunnel.

I was reflecting on the whole process that has lead us to the point where we now stand with the brewery. As I was gathering up documents for the federal side of things, I found copies of my first email interactions with the TTB and the NH Liquor Commission, from February 2009!  It is hard to believe how long it has been since this all started: the day when I brought home a copy of "Farmhouse Ales" and Tracy started reading it and said, "We could do this."  So it began.

It has been a long journey, but, overall a good one.  There were definitely times we both wanted to throw in the towel, but we kept on going.  Neither one of us relishes the role of being one of those "You know, I always wanted to..." types.  Along the way we have made many new friends and my carpentry skills have improved greatly!  Soon, we hope to have all our new and old friends over for a grand opening!  We will let you know when that happens...


Thursday, October 24, 2013

The Very First Brew

Hello Dear Readers,

I have recently returned from a much needed vacation that included a visit with my parents, a solo trip to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area, and a very special tasting of the very first beer I brewed.
The author with the last bottle of his first homebrew.

Back in 1991, while working at the Gunflint Lodge, I came across an ad for a beer making kit in a magazine.  I think the magazine was Field & Stream..  The brand name of the kit was Superbrau, or something similar.

The kit contained three small cans of hopped malt extract.  The process involved boiling the malt extract with a bunch of sugar and about five gallons of water.  Then toss in some dry yeast and wait a week to bottle. Then came the hard part.

After one week it was, theoretically, ready to bottle.  This particular kit recommended putting a spoonful of sugar in each bottle before filling to prime the beer so it would carbonate in the bottle.  This proved a bit much.

After one week, according to our kit's directions, our beer was ready to drink.  However, the spoonful of sugar had resulted in a grossly over-carbonated beer.  The bottles overflowed upon opening and did little better when poured into a glass.

Crystal clear, after 22 years!
The beer itself was not bad.  It was supposed to be a Moosehead Lager clone.  While not tasting exactly like Moosehead, it was similar and overall a pretty decent beer.  We never drank the whole batch and the remainder sat in my parent's basement for many years.  Eventually most of it was thrown out, but my Dad saved a few bottles.

Over the years, we had opened these remaining bottles at intervals and had impromptu taste tests.  Strikingly, the taste never seemed to vary.  The last taste test, in 2008, 17 years after bottling, the beer tasted almost exactly like it originally had.  This year's taste test, 22 years after bottling, was another story.

Perhaps 22 years is just too long to keep a bottle conditioned beer.  This years offering, the final bottle from the original batch, was a bit of a disappointment.  While tasting a bit like Moosehead Lager, or at least what I remembered it to taste like,  my first brew had somehow become cloyingly sweet.  It was a bit like drinking thinned syrup.  How this could be, I am not sure.  After 22 years anything vaguely resembling a sugar should have been long ago fermented. Yet there it was, an overly sweet Canadian lager.

So maybe the final test bottle was a disappointment.  Then again, how many brewers get the chance to taste their first beer 22 years after it was bottled?

The last of my very first brew has passed into history.  Perhaps that is as it should be.


Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Some Numbers from the Boiler Firing

Ah yes, the first firing of the boiler is now a memory of success.  For readers of a more technical bent, here are some numbers from the event:

From match to first boil: 3hrs.

After the boil was established, the firebox was closed down and no more wood added. Boiling continued for 2hrs.

Water temperature was 140 degrees F 13hrs after the cessation of boiling.

The fire used surprisingly little wood and was very efficient leaving little ash and producing no visible smoke for most of the test session.

Clearly, letting the wort sit overnight will not cool it sufficiently to be run into the fermenter. We will need to find some other means of cooling the wort, whether chiller, coolship of something else.  Any suggestions? 


Sunday, September 22, 2013

Adventures In Boiling - It Works!

First smoke out of the new chimney!

Loyal Readers, you are well aware that I have been working with laser -focus on getting the brewery functional.  Only a few days ago we finished the chimney. Today we passed a milestone when we fired the boiler for the first time.  Our good friend Tom Coty came over and he and I fired up the boiler for the first time.  With no idea how this would work, we put match to wood and prayed...

Ready for the match!
Firing the boiler for the first time was an intimidating task.  What if something went wrong or an insurmountable flaw was found in the design?  Those were questions I did not dare to ask.  In my mind I knew I needed to focus and boiled down (note pun) the task to its essence:  can we get water to boil or not?

Nothing else means anything.  If we can boil water, we can brew beer.  If not, then we wasted a butt-load of money.  This was do or die.  Nothing less than the viability of our whole brewery venture was at stake.

To put things simply-It worked!  We managed to raise a boil and hold it for two hours.  There were a few glitches, but nothing we can't fix.  What a relief.  At this point, everything else is secondary.  We have a boiler and it works!

First fire under way!
It was such a relief to have the boiler work.  When designing it, I could find almost no information, so I based my design on sugaring evaporators.  In the end it worked and that is all that matters.  A big thanks to all who helped make this possible!  We are well on our way to being a real brewery.

Friday, September 20, 2013

We Have Valves!

Great news!  The valves and fittings arrived today.  That means that on Sunday we will test the boiler for the first time.  Let's see what kind of heat we can raise!

The new butterfly valve.  What a stainless steel beauty!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Chimney & Trapdoor

Things continue to move along here at the Belgian Mare.  Still, I did manage  to brew a couple of beers.  The first is a pale ale.  I kegged it and sampled it a few days later ( a bit too early).  It is very good, though I see room for improvement.  The other brew is a lager that is still in the fermenter.

Towering stainless steel!
Now for news on the brewery.  On Sunday, our old friend Danny came out and we finished installing the chimney.  His skill has really helped move this project along.  Once we are officially open we pretty much own him his own batch.

The secret cellar entrance!
The second accomplishment is that we now have a trapdoor in the sales/gallery area.  This is something I have been hoping to get done for some time.  With my new hammer-drill in hand, I set to the task.  It took longer than anticipated, but we now have a trap door instead of a gaping hole.  Progress and safety.


Sunday, September 8, 2013

11,000 Visits & Chimney Work

Wow!  So this venerable old blog has passed the 11,000 visitors mark.  Pretty amazing that people have looked at what I have to say that many times.

The other big news is that we have started installing the chimney.  Actually, it is pretty much installed.  All that is left is to install the weather shield and cap.  Originally, this was all to be done by a professional.  However, after being rescheduled several times and having an alternate contractor bail out, we decided to do it ourselves. Once having set our minds, I purchased the necessary parts and borrowed a roof ladder.  

Now roof ladders are interesting things.  They are ladders with a hook or hooks at the top.  The idea is that the ladder lays flat on the roof with the hook over the ridge.  The hook secures the ladder and one may crawl up and down the roof ladder in perfect safety.

In reality, roof ladders are a true test of one's mental and cardiac fortitude.  The ladder itself creaks and flexes with a nerve-shredding  rhythm while the hook slides up and down with the tempo.  So one finds oneself ascending toward the peak of the roof with bulging eyes glued to the undulating hook.  With each upward bounce of the hook, the climber's heart beats faster and inches a little farther up their throat as the hook threatens each time to come clear of the ridge and send the climber shooting into space on a magic ladder ride.  But each time the hook stops just short of sending the climber into oblivion and returns to its original position to begin the torture anew.

After a knocking a few years off my life on my first two trips up the roof ladder I wised-up and figured out a way to better secure myself and the ladder. As far as we have progressed, I need only take a few more trips up the roof ladder to complete our chimney.  And it is a darn good thing too!


Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Italian Bottle Filler, etc...

In the last month and a half we have been unable to access our internet for a total of two and a half weeks. In the modern world, that is a lifetime.  Today, the 'net came back up after a week off and let us hope it keeps going for a while.With no internet one has a hard time researching purchases and filling out federal and state forms.  These last two are critical for us at this point. Not having internet access made me realize two things: How important it is to modern American life and how much time it wastes.

So why is it that the Italians are so good at cars, bikes, and bottlers?
Now to the good news.  We have finally received our bottler!  It is a stainless steel Italian beauty that is completely mechanical.  It takes a bit of charm to get it going, but once it is up and running it is a dream and will be a big contributor to the function of our brewery.  

In other news, today I picked up the parts for the chimney.  We had contracted this job but both contractors were unable to complete the job. So now it is a do-it-yourself proposition.  My brother-in-law, Eric Gauvin, has agreed to come up and help out.  Any others who are available to help out are welcome. This Saturday we may have a new chimney to show off!  

Dear Reader, I shall keep you posted...

Monday, August 19, 2013

The Less Pleasant Activities

Lately I have been occupied with the less pleasant activities of a brewer's life, namely, applying for permits.  This is a critical aspect of the brewery's existence, yet the one I find least tasteful.  At least we can now do all this stuff on the internet.  Why can't they just trust that I will be a good brewery owner?

On a more fun note, I have ordered our bottler, and it should be here this week.  Some time ago I had discovered that an Italian firm still made stainless steel gravity-feed bottle fillers.  These are designed for small wineries, but since our beers will be bottled conditioned, it will work just fine for us. Actually getting one of these turned out to be a bit problematic.  Even though their existence was unknown to me until recently, they are actually quite popular and not one dealer in the US had one in stock.  At the time, I was told that more were expected within 2-3 weeks (the old retailer's standby answer).  In the end it proved to be about two months until one showed up on Woburn, MA.  I jumped at the chance and have been assured that it is on its way here.

Let us hope....

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Roofs, Cellars, and Flowers

New shelves ready for their finish.

Still hammering away on the building.  And still without a chimney.  Hopefully this month will see the installation of the chimney and we can get to work testing the boiler. In the meantime I have been working on  painting, shelving and cellar doors.  The shelves are coming along nicely.  They are constructed entirely of 1"x12" pine boards and finished with a mixture of pine tar and beeswax. The mixture gives a nice luster finish that is waterproof and slowly gives the wood a honey color.

I have also built both doors for the cellar.  Quite a task if one happens to be working alone.  I did manage, and even got one hung.  It was an adventure hanging that first door.  I got it in place only to discover that it was rhombohedral! Everything was parallel, just not square.  Not sure how I managed that, but a little trimming and it went in just fine.

The other door is nice and square. It  needed another coat of paint and has to have about 1/8 inch shaved off the width. Hopefully, tomorrow it will be hung and we will have a cellar that can be closed!
One cellar door!

 On the down side, we suffered some storm damage to the house and had new roofing put on.  That ate up most of the ready cash, but it had to be done.  It was hard to sleep with water dripping on the bed.  In spite of all that has been going on, I took some time to stop and small the flowers.  I suggest you do the same. Cheers!
The wildflowers seem to like the slope behind the brewery.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Lager Update

A bit ago I tried a new idea with my "New England Cream Lager" recipe.  Instead of my old standby, Kent Goldings, I used Chinook hops instead.  We have cracked more than a few and the results are very good.  It is a crisp, full-bodied, refreshing lager with  a strong malt backbone and hop character that starts with a citrus flavor and ends with a strong bitterness. Excellent!

The only downside, is that the lager did not clarify very well and produced curiously large amounts of sediment in the bottle.  But, given the excellent flavor profile, are these really defects?  If it bothers you, close your eyes, I say!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Thunderstorms, Paint, and Disappearing Caulk

As many of you already know, we here in Alstead have been hit hard by the recent spate of thunderstorms.  Twice I have been up all night monitoring flooding in various locations.  Such is the life of a small town fireman.  Fortunately, our town had no injuries and any damage was simply material.

All of this had slowed down work on the brewery.  In fact, it has rained every day I have had off for just over three weeks.  But that did not stop me.  Working between storms I manage to finish the siding on the back of the brewery and paint the fascia boards front and back.  I have also managed to get some trim work done on the interior.

One down spot did occur.  I caulked the big window on the  back of the brewery.  A few hours later we were hit by a big storm that resulted in me being called out on flood duty.  A couple of days later I was back at the brewery working and noticed that the aforementioned window had not been caulked.  "Strange," I thought, "I could have sworn that I had caulked that window."  Then I looked closer.  I noticed white streaks below the window.  Then the realization hit me, I had caulked the window, it was just that the caulk had melted in the subsequent heavy rainfall.  I guess that whole "cures in two hours" thing on the label was just a guideline.

Check out the photos below for our latest progress.  


The front looks lots better with the fascia painted.  Wood to the left, lumber to the right...

Still not done on the ladder, but things are looking up.

A look at the interior trim and the sales area.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Last of the Anderson American Heritage Series Windows

The rain continues.  Today it was thunder-storms.  However, there was a brief respite.   During this short interval between storms, I ran out and checked the area around the rough opening for the loft window (the last window we needed to install). It was dry, so I decided to try to install the last window.  This was a small window, two feet by two feet, so it was easy to position but a bit small for leaning out of and putting in screws and taping edges etc.  I managed, but I still had to take a few trips up the ladder to put in additional screws and smooth out tape.  In the end, I got the last window installed and it feels good.


Between bouts of bad weather, the last window was finally installed!

Friday, June 14, 2013

Interior Trim

Near-continuous has prevented me from finishing the last bit of siding.  That does not mean that I have been able to do nothing.  Thumbing my nose at the heavy downpour outside, I took my act inside.  After a trip to Woodell and Daughters for supplies, I was ready to go. In a flurry of cutting, ripping, and nailing, I managed to finish the trim on the doors and windows of the sales area.  These are not the best photos, but it looks pretty nice in real life.

I have also contacted the construction company and soon the chimney will be installed.


Close-up of one of the windows.

Window and door trim.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

The Last Wall

Only one more wall left and we are done with the siding.  With that thought in mind, my new neighbor, Danny, came up to help with the last of the siding.  For any of you who have been following this blog, the difficulties with finishing this last wall will be familiar.  For those not familiar with the situation, I will provide a quick recap.  The back of the brewery is 30 feet tall from ground to ridgeline. Further, retaining walls on either side of the cellar entrance make reaching some parts of the wall from a ladder impossible.  I was beginning to feel this task was simply beyond me. But Danny had an idea.

Danny's idea, to over-simplify, consisted of building a platform/scaffold to set the ladder upon.  What we did was take a 2x12 that was long enough to span the retaining walls and add a cleat at the back and outriggers for stabilization.  In the center, a beam was added for additional support.  The ladder was then placed upon this scaffold.  This allowed the ladder to reach all areas of the walls from a level footing.

I admit that I was a bit scared of this whole set-up.  However, Danny is a very experienced carpenter and constructed the scaffold very well.  In the end we were able to use it all day with no mishaps.  Check out the photos to see just how much we accomplished.
Danny's scaffold/platform in place with one ladder.

So close to being done, we can taste it

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Making A Bit Of Lager

Today I decided to take a bit of a break from brewery building and brew a beer.  A hard decision, but we are at a part of the construction that is particularly difficult. That, coupled with the fact that I had some help lined up for Thursday, made staying inside and brewing a less guilt-bearing choice.  Besides, I did not spend the whole day inside, I took Banana for two walks.  The woods are getting very thick!

For this brew I decided to experiment.  I guess that it could be said that, like a true artist, I experiment with every brew.  This time, though, I decided to be a bit more controlled.  I duplicated the original recipe for New England Cream Lager but substituted Chinook hops for the original.  I have never used Chinook but, after doing some research, decided to give them a try.   By making the hops the only thing I changed between the two recipes, I should get a pretty good idea of what type of flavor Chinook hops provide, at least in a lager.

I had always considered Chinook hops a hop for the heavy "double IPAs".  I do not know where I acquired that prejudice, but, perhaps, it is the impetus for me using it in a lager.  Maybe it was just my recent hop research.  Either way the deed is done and the results we be reported here, Dear Reader.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Seize The Opportunity

Our old friends from Woodell and Daughters offered me the opportunity to get some of their leftover wood for a good price. In anticipation of brewing this fall, I decided to take them up on the offer and start putting in a supply of wood. Tina mentioned it was bundled and I wondered just how big a bundle was.  She told me not to worry, she would use the loader to put the bundle in my truck! Then she disappeared among the sundry stacks and piles of the yard. This must be a big bundle indeed, thought I.

Soon I heard the throaty growl of a diesel engine and Tina reappeared driving a payloader equipped with forks and carrying a huge amount of wood held together with metal bands.  The bundle appeared to be larger than the truck and I wondered how she would make it fit.  

Not to worry.  With precision maneuvering and an expert touch, Tina lightly placed the bundle in the box of the truck.  It took up the whole width of the box and was as high as the cab.  It also extended about four feet past the tailgate.  I found myself once again glad to have a truck with a full-sized box and heavy-duty springs.

With a bit of flexibility in my schedule for today, I decided to get another bundle after I finished unloading the first.  With all that I still had time to work a bit on the brewery and get some of the garden put in.

Fuel for the beer.


The new birds are adjusting to life in the big girl coop.  They spent most of the day exploring their fenced run and at night only a few had to be chased down and put back in the coop.  This is one of the most fun times as the birds look like miniature adults.

A pair of blue cochins check out their new home.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Last of the Big Windows

Today we had no rain. Given this, I was eager to get to work on the brewery.  However, I first had to take a trip to the sawmill for some boards and a trip to Keene, which would prove to be for nothing.  Upon returning, I realized that the day was fading fast.  So instead of trying to get finished up with a few of the more detail oriented tasks, i decided to install the last of the big windows (4' x 5') by my self.

I am not sure what got into me, I guess that I just wanted to get it done.  So I wrestled with ladder jacks and catwalks for a time.  That proved fruitless due to the terrain, so I decided to install the window from the inside.  Below the window opening, I put up a ladder that had ladder mitts,  in case I had to set the window down on something.  Then I removed the sliding pane and hoisted the window into the rough opening.  Tilting it a bit, I was able to slide the window out the rough opening and pull it back into place.  It was then that I realized my drill/driver was out of reach.  So I had to take the window down put the drill/driver in a more appropriate location and do it all over again.

I put in as many screws as possible from the inside.  I then ran around the building, climbed the ladder and put in the rest of the screws.  I had visions of the window slowly separating from the building and crashing down upon my head.  Such was not the case.  In the end all went smoothly and the last of the big windows was installed and I did it all by myself.

A further bonus to the day was that I found a relatively inexpensive source for a t least part of the wood fuel we will need for the brewery.


The last of the big windows.  I did it my way...

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Wind, Rain, and Wasps

After battling the wind, rain, and wasps for the last three days I finally got the front of the brewery done.    The wind today really had the ladder shaking, but I was not to be denied! Only one more side and two windows left to do.  Pretty exciting that we are getting this close.

The siding on the front of the brewery is done!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Rain, Hops and More Siding


I am starting to get really excited about getting this brewery done.  I have been hammering away (literally) every spare moment I get.  Check out the photos below.  I finished the north side of the brewery myself and trimmed the windows.  Last week I met my new neighbor Danny.  He has worked in the past as a carpenter and is a craft beer enthusiast.  On Sunday he came out to lend a hand.  Let me tell you, putting up siding goes a lot faster with two people!  We could have accomplished much more but rain put an end to our efforts.  Today I managed to put in a few hours by myself though, once again, rain put an end to my efforts.  The last piece of siding I put up went into place accompanied by the sound of rain and thunder.  Needless to say, I have no photos of today's efforts. We are so close!


I got caught flat-footed by the hops this year.  One day I was thinking it was time to trim the rhizomes and the next the hops had broken out and were a foot tall!  Now several are taller than me and booming right along.  In the past the first plants topped out about the end of May, so we appear to be on schedule.  Several of the bines are very thick and leafy.  Hopefully this indicates a good harvest is in the offing.

Until next time,


The north side, finished!

With Danny's help, this went very quickly.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Four Windows, Stainless Steel, & Protecto Tape

Today I finished putting up the windows on the south side of the brewery.  Fortunately, these were small windows that I could do by myself.  We now have all four windows installed on that side of the brewery.  I think it looks pretty nice....
This thing is starting to look like a real brewery!

On Sunday, with help from Chris Gauvin, we installed the two big windows on the north side of the brewery.  That was an adventure!  Today I finished sealing the windows with Protecto Tape.  It is good stuff that works.

The Tyvek needs some attention...

The first thing I did today was to pick up the remaining covers for the mash tun and fermentors.  These had been fabricated by Ray Britton at Melanson Company.  He had constructed the first cover, which was spot on. It only made sense to have build the last three.  Once again, Ray's work is perfect.  See the result below...

Another perfect fabrication job by Ray Britton.

So all in all, today was a productive day.  The best part of the day was taking Banana-dog for a two-hour walk in the woods.  We went high up on Smith Hill and were treated to a transcendent view of the New Hampshire hills.  It was a good way to start.


Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Power Tools, Windows, & Weather

As can be seen in the above photo, we have made some progress on the brewery.  More would have been completed were it not for multiple power tool failures on Sunday and rainy weather today.  Such is life.

On the plus side, today I picked up the rest of the windows I need to complete the building; so a window-setting party is in the very near future.  I have also placed the order for the remaining fermenter covers.  It is exciting to be getting this much closer to finishing.

Even though the rain hampered things with the brewery, I was not idle.  I took the opportunity to clean out the garage and set up the brooder.  Tomorrow we are getting some new chicks!  We have quite a few coming and many are breeds we have never had before.  I always enjoy having the babies, so stop on by for a peek at the peeps.

Spring must tickle the fancy of brewers as we have had many interested parties contact and/or visit the brewery.  Some even brought samples of their own brews! It is great to see the level of interest our project has generated. Hopefully these visits will lead to some future partnerships.

Till next time, Cheers!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Still Going...

Greetings loyal followers!

I apologize for the tardiness of my postings this year.  Let me assure you that it is not due to lack of activity on the brewery.  I have continued to chip away at it whenever opportunity presents itself. Recently, the mash tun, exterior door and loft floor have all been completed. At this stage of the game, I would say that the building itself is 80-90% finished.  Most of the materials to complete the brewery are on hand, so I will continue to work away.  Some things, such as building the chimney for the boiler, will require a professional and we have received estimates for that work.

On the farm, the big news is that the chickens have started laying again!  We have plenty of eggs to go around so stop on by for a dozen and a peak at the brewery.

The sad news is that we had to say good-bye to our friend Duchess the Great Dane, who was a fixture at the farm and appeared in several of the brewery photos.  She is greatly missed.

So I am still going on the brewery.  Some farm structures sustained damage this winter and will need to be repaired or replaced (one horse shed is a complete loss). This will slow progress on the brewery a bit but we shall persevere! 

Those of you who have followed us from the start know that this has been a long process.  However, we are nearing completion and are considering taking on investors to help give this venture an extra push to get launched.  If you are interested, or know anyone who may be, please contact us by phone (603-835-7801) or email (