Hey guys! Its been a while since I’ve posted, but I’ve had some pretty exciting things going on. Most exciting of all is that I’m starting a Brewpub; but it’s a little different.
We own two other businesses, one is a Coffee Shop, called Café Luz and one is something called Kitchen Incubator; where we help aspiring food entrepreneurs start their businesses by providing them with a fully licensed commercial kitchen to manufacture their products, as well as all the business guidance a small start-up needs (Accounting, distribution contacts, business plan, etc).
We fell in love with brewing around two years ago, and dove right of onto the deep end with it. The Houston homebrew scene is awesome and full of incredibly talented brewers that are held back from opening their own place because of the amazingly backasswards Texas beer laws. So we decided to extend the Kitchen Incubator concept to brewing, and Brewery Incubator was born.
The way we’re setting it up is that we’re incubating 10-12 startup brewers. We’re providing the system and retail point for them (the coffee shop is being transformed into a pub) for them to establish a strong brand identity and client base. We also have an entrepreneurial specialist on board and a lawyer specializing in Texas craft beer law to help them out when they’re ready to head out on their own. The idea is to already have a client base and a help navigating funding and legal issues as to maximize their chance of success.
We’re probably around 85% complete on our buildout, we have a truly Pico-brewery set up right now. For the time being it’s only a half barrel, but we’re looking at expanding to a 3 bbl system within the next year. Our biggest constraints right now are space and of course funds. We’ll be launching a kickstarter campaign soonto help fund the rest of the build out.
For the time being, I figured you guys would enjoy seeing what we’ve done so far and what the plans going forward are.
Our brew house is a modified Sabco Brew Magic. Right now the changes include a bigger pump and full low pressure Nat Gas system mated to Jet burners. I tend to go a little overboard on things, and I might have over done it with the burners, I’m pushing about 600k BTUs total. It does heat up quick though. The next mod to it is new sightglasses, as all that heat may or may not have melted the composite ones that came with the system
The Short term upgrades for the brewhouse include a 55 gal kettle and a bigger mash tun.
Our cold Liquor tank is not the prettiest, but it works. We have mated it to a chillwizard and it gives us awesome cooling. I can get my wort cooled to within a half degree of my target temp. It's that large cooler on the far side of the Sabco. A 55 gallon Drum lives inside of it that we fill with water and hook up to a PID controller that regulates the Freezer.
I am in the process of designing what will be my Sanitizing, Cleaning and keg washing station. These are some prelim drawings of what it’s gonna look like.
Also, we’re putting in a trough where the 3cpt sink is in right now, so we can wash our kettles a little easier.