Friday, June 17, 2016

New Main Brewing is Going PRO!

It’s been a while since my last update, and quite a bit has happened.  For those of you who aren’t my Facebook friends (I’m not sure how else you might have gotten here, but I digress…), there has been some big news in the last month.  We’re starting a production brewery!  We’re teaming up with David and Amanda at New Main Brewing to go pro.  We’re going to use the New Main name and concept going forward.  David is doing a great job of blogging about the journey of opening a brewery over at the New Main blog, so I'm not going to get into the weeds on that end.  Hopefully in a year or so, when we’re up and running, it will be fun to go back and read through that!

I’ll be the head brewer for this, and I’ve been working on recipe development and tweaking.  Between the two of us, we have several award-winning beers, and many others that didn’t win, but were still highly rated.  Too many, really, to start with, so we’re having to pick a good core of 6 or so beers to start.  I can tell you that most likely my gold-medal winning saison will be one, as will David's best-in-show-winning porter.  We’ll be getting input from the community as we do fundraising, as well.  In fact, tonight David will be at Dr. Jekyll’s Beer Lab in Pantego pouring samples from several of our beers.  If you’re in that area, you should head over and check it out.

Recipe development and going from the homebrew scale (5-6 gallon batches) to a production brewery scale (15 barrels, or 465 gallons) can be a daunting challenge.  I've been doing tons of research, and have created numerous spreadsheets filled with brewing equations to help.  Good thing I'm an IT and Excel nerd, eh?

A few weeks ago, we did a joint brew day to do a test batch of David’s witbier recipe.  We split the batch in two, and each fermented half at different temperatures, so see what the differences did to the flavor of the beer.  David will have both of those tonight, so swing by and help us decide which one to use!  Taste beer for free and give us your honest feedback.  This is your chance to have a say in what a brewery makes, don’t let it pass you by!

We're also working on coming up with a naming scheme for our beers.  We'd like to have some kind of theme in the different names.  If you have ideas, let us hear them!

This weekend is the deadline to turn in our entries to Martin House’s Riverside Shootout that we both did back in April.  David brewed his tropical stout, and I brewed the Belgian rye IPA.  Both turned out pretty good, so we’re excited to see how they do in the competition.  Next up will probably be Deep Elum’s Labor of Love.  Since I’m not technically employed by a brewery yet, since we’re still working on fundraising, I can still enter.  You can enter 3 beers this year, instead of two.  I brewed a slightly tweaked batch of saison last weekend (added a touch of wheat malt for head retention), so I’ll probably enter that.  I might enter the Belgian rye IPA if it doesn’t win at Martin House.  I also have the wit and quad kegged, so those are also possibilities.  Once the saison is done, I have an IPA recipe to try out, too, but that might not be ready to turn in before I head off for my National Guard annual training in early August.  A good showing there will hopefully help in our coming fundraising efforts.

Speaking of fundraising, you have 2 days left to buy a limited edition (one time only) New Main Brewing t-shirt to show that you were an early supporter of the brewery!  Head over to our page and buy one of each color!  On the New Main blog, you can also visit the store on the right hand side and buy things like personalized barstools at the brew pub and brewer for a day parties once we open.

Check back in the coming weeks and months for more news on upcoming events and tastings.  Hope to see you all soon!