Author Topic: What system should I buy????  (Read 1278 times)

jyamkhan

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What system should I buy????
« on: February 17, 2019, 09:15:34 PM »
I am new to brewing, so far I have done 6 or so all grain batches with good success. I own a successful bar and grill and was thinking of brewing my own beer for sale at my bar.  I have 18 taps and I figure I could start off with one tap of my own and eventually maybe have 3 taps or so of my own beers on tap.

I have been looking at the Brew Magic system as a good starting unit but was wondering if I should consider another brand or maybe something a little bigger.  Currently I sell about a keg a week of most of the micro brews on tap (Miller Lite and Coors lite dominate with 3-4 a week each) so I figure I could sell a keg a week of my own beer and hopefully grow that number in a year or two.

I have 1500 square feet available to brew, hood system etc. The money is not an issue, I just dont want to get into a overkill situation with the brew system.

Any suggestions?

Offline brewfun

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Re: What system should I buy????
« Reply #1 on: February 18, 2019, 07:07:57 AM »
I am new to brewing, so far I have done 6 or so all grain batches with good success. I own a successful bar and grill and was thinking of brewing my own beer for sale at my bar.  I have 18 taps

Any suggestions?

Make sure this is something you want to do because it makes sense for your business, not because you like making beer.

The first thing to do is ask yourself some very important questions.
1) Is there a process to do this that follows law and local codes?
2) Do I have the hours to brew so that I don't run out of beer?
3) Would I make a profit if I have to hire someone?

If you can answer yes to all of those, you can ask a few more questions that will help you determine what type of system you'll want to install.

You'll very quickly do the math about the cost of installing a legal brewery in your establishment. Wherever you are in the world, there tends to be some government interest in alcohol production.

You should make the assumption that house beer will be at least as popular as your fastest selling beer. Figure that you'll want to make a 4 to 8 week supply of it and any others that you add. This should give you the volume to target. Add 20% for losses and a little time cushion and you have your brewhouse size. Therefore, if you sell a keg per week, that's 800 gallons per year. A two month supply would be about 5 barrels. You could have three house beers on tap and only have to commit one or two days every other week out of your schedule.

So far, that seems pretty straightforward.

You'll need a brewhouse, fermenters, pumps, kegs or serving tanks, keg washer, glycol chiller, drains, water supply and gas for the burners. You'll also need space to store ingredients, empty kegs, and cleaning chemicals. Economically, you will be paying for the beer long before you sell it. Your cost of ingredients will be due just about the time you start selling it and your labor is typically due even sooner. Once you commit it can be very, very difficult to back out because of customer expectations.
Beer Appreciation is the space between pints.

Offline dtapke

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Re: What system should I buy????
« Reply #2 on: February 18, 2019, 07:24:18 AM »
Just Don't.

Do you have a process in mind?
Legally you'll need to license yourself as a brewpub, this will probably take a year. You'll have to have your brewery in place and up to code before you can apply for the license. (at least where i am thats the case)

with 6 all grain batches under your belt, I can't imagine you're experienced enough to be brewing commercial grade batches. I've seen this happen, and was just at a couple breweries this weekend that i literally poured out their beer. Likely these were guys like you who "hey my buddies like my beer!" so they figured they'd start a brewery.

now, these may make some of their investment back at the start because everyone wants to go try out the new beer, but word quickly gets out that their beer is awful, and their business will fail.

My .02, brew for another few years, then think about it. because if your business is successful now, a couple bad batches of beer may ruin that.

and keep in mind you're looking at dropping an easy 20-30K pretty quick to "get started"
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Offline Kevin58

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Re: What system should I buy????
« Reply #3 on: February 18, 2019, 10:31:22 AM »
Be prepared for unexpected expenses stemming from local codes and regulations. I've seen brewers suddenly required to upgrade their water service, install fireproof doors, additional fire extinguishing, replace walls etc.

Also to what dtapke was saying about honing your brewing skills... I heard someone recently say that making good beer at home is like being a good cook while making good beer professionally is more like being a top chef. The skills required to go from one to another are quite different.
If you?re stressing over homebrewing, you?re doing something wrong.
- Denny Conn

Offline brewfun

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Re: What system should I buy????
« Reply #4 on: February 18, 2019, 10:43:59 AM »
Be prepared for unexpected expenses stemming from local codes and regulations. I've seen brewers suddenly required to upgrade their water service, install fireproof doors, additional fire extinguishing, replace walls etc.


The one that catches most new breweries are sewer access fees and the cost of balancing wastewater to city standards.
Beer Appreciation is the space between pints.

 

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