Good news, everyone. We will be reopening the brewery on April 7th.
We have had quite the extended winter break and there have been many factors impacting us and our ability to brew. We got pretty close to throwing in the towel because of all the change and growth happening around us in the beer industry but we’ve decided to roll with the punches, makes some changes, and keep brewing because we didn’t start brewing beer to get rich, be cool, or have something interesting to talk about. We did it because we love to make beer, drink beer, talk about beer, and most importantly, be creative with beer.
It’s interesting what happens when you start out with the intention of doing XYZ and then as you are doing XYZ, you begin to learn that XYZ is now a job and it can suck the fun right out of things. This is sort of where we ended up as we had gained so much popularity and the demand on our core 4 beers was so high they were the only beers we were making. Creatively, that can only go on for so long.
We used to love doing 5-10 gallon R&D batches of beer and time and demand from the brewery plus the time and demand from our day jobs really put an end to that especially after one of our day jobs moved from just round the corner in Renton to the bowels of commute hell that is Redmond. Losing the gift of 3-4 hours of time a day really hurt our ability to create new recipes, knock out brew chores after work, heck there were even times we’d get a brew session done friday after work.
Another huge factor that dropped us on our face in 2017 is the wholesaler who we developed a frustrating but amicable relationship with strung us along for most of 2016/2017 knowing that they were running their business and family legacy into the ground. When they finally decided to close, we were pretty much dropped without a solution. The prices we got from this wholesaler made the numbers work well at our scale. We had major plans to partner with the brewery our wholesaler was going to open so we could push our our Cedar River Red in cans but that all came to a halt. Thankfully before we wrote a check. That didn’t solve our wholesale problem, but we did get some retail love from Sound Homebrew to keep us going through the fall of last year. You should visit this shop if you have any homebrew needs. Very clean, organized, and knowledgeable.
So now we’re going to make some changes that will allow us to be creative, keep offering some of our classic brews, and not break the bank doing so. Part of that change is we’ve decided that going forward we’ll close the tasting room from Halloween through St. Patrick’s Day. We’ll also be doing more small batches in an effort to keep the creativity flowing. In the past we’ve been known to have up to 6 different beers on tap but that will probably drop down to about 3 or 4.
Thanks for the patience as we make these adjustments and ramp back up. It will be very nice to make beer for fun again because for us, that’s what it’s about.
Erik & Kitty