Update

What’s Next?

So it’s been a while on posting, and there are plenty of reasons why.  We looked at a lot of spaces, many were out of our price range or too large for what we wanted to do.  We didn’t need much space to begin with, and we had a limit of what we could handle.  A lot of the spaces we looked at were up to 5x what are limit was.  We did however get close on one space, had the LOI (Letter of Intent) in, and were starting negotiations.  However, the building wasn’t budging on a few key items that would have hurt our budget in the business plan.  So we decided to go quiet for a bit, continue brewing and work on other things.

During that time, other things changed.  I recently had my first child born, and so things have changed financially based on his arrival.  This means the dream has to be put on hold for a while longer.  However, that does not mean the end of Low Brau and beer.

During the day I work at an Architecture & Design firm.  I have made a few changes firm wise since the start of Low Brau, and during that process, I have been able to pull in an area of focus that I have had experience in, and really run with it.  With my restaurant experience, I was able to work on Brookland Pint (www.brooklandpint.com), which opened end of the summer and is doing pretty well.  I’ve also done work on a distillery and am currently working with a brewery.

In addition to marrying design with my love for all things beer, I’m also moving forward with trying to get Cicerone Certified.  I’m hoping to sit for the exam in May.  I already have the Beer Server complete, and want to move forward to the next level.  There are a few other beer related projects that are going on as well.  So I am still very much saturated in the beer world.

As for brewing, I will still be doing so when I can (it’s a bit hard now, until we open our DC office).  The dream is still there to one day own a brewery, more than likely a brewpub.

Oktoberfests

Oktoberfests

So as we continue to search for the appropriate location for the brewery (still reviewing multiple locations), we fill some of our free time by attending beer events.  This October, we decided to check out a couple of Oktoberfests that we hadn’t attended previously.

On October 6th, 2012 we headed to the Capitol City Brewing hosted Shirlington Oktoberfest.  The event had well over 50 breweries represented, and plenty of beers for sampling.  Of course, we had to go in traditional outfits, including Heidi.

On October 13, 2012 we drove up to Bethlehem Pennsylvania to attend the Yuengling / ArtQuest sponsored Oktoberfest.  This Oktoberfest is more representative of the true Oktoberfests, with a big tent full of tables, Oompah Bands, and more.  There weren’t a long list of breweries present, but there were multiple styles of Yuengling.  It is held at The SteelStacks, which is the old abandoned steel mills and the focus of a burgeoning art district.  Bethlehem was true in form of being called the City of Festivals, as we discovered it was hosting a Harvest Fest downtown as well, with beer and soup sampling.  While there, we had to stop in at Brew Works (http://www.thebrewworks.com/bethlehem-brew-works/), to pick up some beers to take home, as well as grab a bite to eat.  This is a great brewpub with a strong showing of beers as well as great food.  Here is a pic from their copper brew house.

Hopefully soon, we’ll be able to add some pictures of our own brew house.

 

Test Batches & More

1.  Space Situation:  We are still looking for a space, we had a couple of leads and things didn’t go as hoped for, however we are not giving up and continuing the search.  If we can’t find viable warehouse space, we have some ideas for backup plans.

2. Mission Small Business:  A lot of people have been asking how the Mission Small Business grant is coming along.  We received over the 250 required votes (283 I believe), so our application was accepted.  Now it’s under review, and they will announce the small businesses that were selected by September 15th.  We hope to hear good news as the grant would be of great assistance, however we are not relying on it, and so continuing to move forward.

3.  Test Batches:  We have been working vigourously on our test batch program, focusing on our Totten Bock and Apfelwein.  We are working with 1 gallon batches, and though it takes the same amount of work, it allows us the ability to test multiple variances at the same time.

The above image is a shot of some of our test batches.  In the front is a Honey Cinnamon Apfelwein, and in the back are three versions of our TottenBock (our Weizenbock beer) in different phases.