They say that the only constant in life is change. According to my wife, that’s doubly true for an Aquarius, which, unfortunately for her, I am.
I’ve been thinking hard over the past few months about what I
need to do with my business. Starting a brewery is capital-intensive, which means it’s expensive. Yes, I could brew a barrel at a time, but I wouldn’t have time to do much else. If I want to be efficient (and profitable) then I have to buy a larger system, and that takes money, which means investors or loans, which means increased risk. I knew this going in, but I chose to look past it.
I’ve always been concerned about how I will make money during the down time between applying for my brewer’s notice and the point when I can sell beer. I bounced a few ideas around in my head but never came up with something that really made sense.
So my wife asked me the question, “What are you really trying to accomplish?” Truth is, I had been asking myself that same question over and over. The answer was much clearer in my mind than I expected: I want to run an establishment where people want to go to drink really good beer. Not just my beer–any good beer. That’s different than what I’d envisioned.
I love to try new beers. I make it a focus to try every new beer I find in a tavern or restaurant. I know other people are like this, too, and I can’t think of a better quality in a customer. Are you like this? If so, I’ll make you a deal: You keep coming in, and I’ll always have something new for you to try.
I love a place where I can be comfortable by myself or when I’m with a group. Sometimes I want to tuck myself away in a corner to read or write, sometimes I want to sit at the bar and chat with the beertender and other patrons, and sometimes I want to sit at a big table with nine of my friends and celebrate the end of the fantasy sports season. That’s a tall order for one establishment, but that’s what I want to offer.
And I love to teach. Sometimes to a fault. I want to help my customers understand and appreciate beer, and that has to be a fun thing to do when you have a wall of taps behind you, through which flow some of the best beers in the world. Or… I can take your order and piss off so you can enjoy it in peace. Whatever works for you.
A successful tavern could pave the way to starting the brewery, especially if I can find the right location to make that easy.
And so like, the other day, someone told me that, at least in Oregon, it’s easier to start up as a brewpub, than as a brewery. Not sure in what context he meant though… With liquor board or loans or what… True?
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