MicroBrewr 042: Open a microbrewery to revitalize an economy
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Matt Katase wasn’t yet legal drinking age when he read an autobiography of a brewery owner. Then he and his friend, Asa Foster, toured a large craft brewery and thought, we can do that. At age twenty-three, they opened The Brew Gentlemen Beer Company in Braddock, Pennsylvania.
After a successful Kickstarter campaign, Matt has the following advice:
- Don’t do it.
- Strategically schedule donations and media interviews throughout the campaign.
- Get lots of donations the first day to foster media impressions.
- Research for optimum length of time.
I first heard about The Brew Gentlemen from Alexis Irvin, who spoke with us on MicroBrewr Podcast 040. Check out episode 40 to hear about Blood, Sweat, and Beer documentary and to get a coupon code for 20% off the price when your order a digital download of the movie.
Matt’s tips to successfully start a brewery:
- Have confidence in yourself, stay true to your mission.
- Learn construction from YouTube videos.
- Make the women’s restroom really nice.
- Care about quality, your customers, and your brand and image.
Kettle size: 3.5 BBL.
Size and quantity of fermentation tanks: 4, 7-BBL.
Size and quantity of bright tanks: 1, 7-BBL.
Annual brewing capacity/last year’s production: 400-600 BBL.
Square footage: 1,500 sq. ft., plus taproom, plus event space.
Years in operation: 7 months (opened May 2014).
“You’ve gotta have confidence in yourself and stay true to your mission.” [Tweet This]
From Robert Villareal: How much did you invest in your very first homebrew and equipment?
- So You Want to Start a Brewery?: The Lagunitas Story by Tony Magee.
- Setting the Table: The Transforming Power of Hospitality in Business by Danny Meyer.
Check out the entire list of recommended books, click here.
An upcoming beer style:
- MicroBrewr 040: Keep persevering to get to the end, December 16, 2014.
- Brewing Up a Business: Adventures in Beer from the Founder of Dogfish Head Craft Brewery by Sam Calagione.
- Superior Motors: Community Restaurant & Farm Ecosystem, Kevin Sousa’s Kickstarter campaign.
- Cicerone Certification Program.
- 8 things you need to know before brewing up a business from scratch, by David Johnson, Fast Company, November 21, 2014.
- Brettanomyces Project, by Chad Yakobson.
- ABC Microbrewery Needs a Kitchen, Arbor Brewing Company’s Indygogo campaign.
- MicroBrewr 022: Expanding to… India!, August 12, 2014.
You can reach Matt Katase and The Brew Gentlemen Beer Company at:
Help keep MicroBrewr on the air. CLICK HERE for ways you can help.
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