Harrisburg operations are complete. The packaging line is coming together in its new home and the T1 fermenters are filling the new cellars. T2 is crawling with German welders, engineers, and fabricators, as well as a ton of local electricians, riggers, welders, and assembly guys. We have a mountain of new equipment and processes to learn, but we’re still finding time to brew. To date we’ve made 500 bbls of Hopback, 600 bbls of Troegenator and 300 bbls of Pale Ale, and close to 1000 bbls of Mad Elf. One new thing we’re all excited to use is the 15 bbl Scratch brewhouse. So far we’ve brewed 3 small batches: Munich Helles, a small batch of Hopback to feed our ale yeast, and Cocoa Porter. (read more…)
November 24, 2011
June 18, 2011
Here are a few pictures of our Brew House and Unitanks being built. The Brew House is on a boat now on its way. The building to house everything is almost ready, the paint will still be drying while we bring in the tanks…
April 15, 2011
A brewery’s Brew House will determine what kinds of beer you can make and ultimately how it will taste. Brewing “geometry” as I call it has a huge impact on flavor; each step adds its mark on the final beer. Building our new brewery from Scratch gave us the opportunity to step back and look at what would make sense, while keeping a few things in mind. 1. We need more beer 2. We need to be able to brew a huge range in styles of beer from our Sunshine Pils @4.5% to our Mad Elf at @11% alcohol. 3. Hop Back, Nugget Nectar, and Flying Mouflan use huge amounts of hops both in the wort kettle and in the ‘Hop Back’ vessel. 4. The Brew House has the most potential for energy and water use. 5. We still need to be able to brew smaller ‘test’ brews experimenting with recipes, ingredients, and techniques. i.e. ‘Scratch Beers’
April 13, 2011
Once the brewhouse location was locked in we could start thinking through the whole brewery flow from grain to bottle. The east side (hot side) is where all the milling, mixing, boiling and the west side (cold) is for fermentation, filtration, lab analysis, packaging and shipping. It’s a very simple and efficient flow with a self guided tour path running parallel with the brewing process.
Conceptually we wanted to design the brewery so you could grab a glass of beer at the bar and go for a walk following the brewing process. You’ll pretty much be able to see everything that happens in a working brewery starting in the tasting room. As you enter the east side you are immediately greeted by two brewhouses (more on that later – John’s blog coming soon) in a room big enough for 100+ people.
Grab your beer and enter the west side of the building and continue down the 10’ tour path – passing fermentation tanks, laboratory, filtration, and kegging. As you approach the end the tour path opens up with a viewing area of bottling looping passed the wood barrel aging room and into the general store/giftshop. Everything is very open and free flowing, you will be able to see, smell, taste and hear the bottles being filled.
April 5, 2011
Thanks again to the Hummelstown Beer Nutz
Check out the Out-Takes too:
April 2, 2011
Where to start? How about MALT
When faced with a mountain of things that all need done at once, it’s hard to choose where to start. We lumped them together, and spent what seemed like 5 min per subject….very good for me since most people say I only have a 45second attention span. I’ll describe the nuts and bolts in order that they happen in the brewery.
We spend a huge amount of time energy, and money, sourcing and evaluating our ingredients.
Water is the biggest and arguably the most important. I’m still working on how to best use Hershey’s water, it’s a little different than we have now, but really good for brewing. When I get closer to being done I’ll talk separately about water; I have some ridiculously cool things in store for water (if you geek out on water like I do…)
Grain is the next most used in the brewery so let’s start there. (read more…)
One of things we really like about the building is it’s an open warehouse with loading docks on both ends. It’s a perfect blank slate to layout a breweries flow; ingredients are received in one end and bottles and kegs out the other. The only catch was we couldn’t decide where to place the brewhouse.
March 29, 2011
“So you want to build a brewery?”
March 28, 2011
If you have come for a tour lately you will have noticed that we are busting at the seams. Things are rapidly changing here…so I figured a few blogs were ripe. Fourteen years ago we started with two guys, a few tanks and the drive to brew the best beer we could. Days were spent scrubbing, tinkering, and of course brewing. We would entice friends, parents, grandparents, aunts, cousins and or anyone we knew (or they knew) to help us bottle nights and weekends. Then Chris would drive around with a tapped keg in the back of his truck and give samples to local restaurants, scoring only a handful of draft account the first month; Catalano’s, Scott’s Bar and Grille, Coakleys, Market Cross Pub and The Warwick (all still selling Troegs!) Craft beer was just starting to grow in our area so it took a lot prodding, time, and shoe leather. One by one we had converts, I kinda described the awakening to our beer like one of those old zombie movies, we bit one person who would tell (bite) a friend, who would in turn tell another. Slowly we got the word out and started selling more beer and building Troegs as a brewery. Each year we dumped every cent we made back into improvements and purchased more equipment. It took while to hire our first employee (our cousin) and almost three years before we could see the light of being a real company. Fast forward to today and there’s 45 people running the brewery. (read more…)