Piney River Brewing Company

Archive for November, 2010|Monthly archive page

Burning the candle

In Start up on November 28, 2010 at 4:51 pm

It’s been awhile since I updated the PRBC Blog.  We’ve been doing this thing I lovingly term “burning the candle at both ends”–brewery, work, brewery, farm, brewery, eat, brewery, sleep, brewery, family, brewery, work with contractors, brewery, brewery, brewery.  The work of building a microbrewery in the Ozarks continues even if the blog posts have been few and far between.

You’re not seeing an apparition…some lights have been hung in the brewery with care.  At some point in its 70-year history, this old barn had electricity, but we haven’t had any electric hooked up to the barn in the 14 years we’ve owned it.

Lights inside. Suddenly BIG and BRIGHT.

Perhaps even more historical for the BARn, the dirt/manure floors are no more.  This weekend, Brian and my dad completed the floor down the center of the building—putting in floor joists, removing just a tad more old dirt (including accidentally hitting and puncturing an old container of very stinky horse liniment), and laying a tongue and groove style plywood sheets.

The center wood floor and the "farm" room.

After completing the insulation, we were able to run the wires for lights and electrical outlets.  Although there’s still more electrical work to be done, we’ve got light and heat inside the BARn.  The central boiler we put in outside also heats the barn, and a furnace blower and ducts for heating/cooling the upstairs and downstairs are in place.

Mechanical room in progress.

Construction continues inside the BARn where we have created a separate enclosure for the brewery/public according to TTB regulation.  Basically, we have to be able to completely lock the public out of the brewery.

The interior door into the brewery/the brewery office.

We also have created a separate area for putting our skid steer and Ranger in a room of their own in the BARn along with other farm tools like fencing supplies, tools, etc.  The wall studs are in place for that.

All of the downstairs walls will be covered with the old tin from the roof after the electric is complete.

We’ve been working with local artist, Brooke Hamilton of Grindstone Design Studio, to craft our logo.  We’re using a simple version of that logo on our new Facebook page…please go there and tell your friends to go there and “like” us.   Brooke is also helping us design our labels.  Brooke actually went on a float trip on the Big Piney to get the complicated version of our logo “right”.  And who said work wasn’t fun?

A "simplified" version of our logo.

Work has also begun on laying a floor upstairs.  We’re using the same type of tongue and groove plywood to level out the floor in the loft.  You wouldn’t believe the way the corners of the building have sagged over time!  No more illusions that you are falling down to the first floor (and that without consuming several beverages!).

Brian lays floor, beginning with the East end.

We should hear from the state of Missouri regarding the status of our application with them; it is much less complicated and takes less time to process than the federal application.

Brian and I are still in awe that this whole “start up” process started just a few weeks ago….

It’s official

In Start up on November 10, 2010 at 10:16 pm

Tonight Brian and I popped the cork on a bottle of Three Philosophers (Ommegang Brewery).  After polishing that off, we sampled our latest and last home brew–what will be named “McKinney Eddy Amber Ale” when it’s labeled.

It’s official folks, we’ve been approved.

Two months after submitting our inches thick application to the Tobacco Tax Bureau, we have received approval to brew and sell alcohol from the federal government!  (Major kudos to Brian.  Our TTB rep told Brian that it was one of the most complete applications she’s ever seen.) When we submitted our application, we were told it would take 90 days, the TTB told us it would be 95 days.  But…we’re through.  APPROVED!

State approval is still on the agenda and must be obtained before we are fully able to brew and sell, but the major hurdle has been crossed.

So, with a little Mark Knopfler’s “Shangri-La” in the background, we had a beer toast tonight.  Wish you could have joined us…but you will be ale to very soon because IT”S OFFICIAL!

The ultimate….

In Start up on November 8, 2010 at 9:57 pm

We started with a beer fridge in the basement.  Smallish, stocked with cold variety.

Our next step was a kegorator.  We wondered how we ever lived without the capabilities to keep beer on tap in our home.

The most recent beer chilling tool is a first in the life of all brewer’s that intend to brew professionally—the walk-in cooler.

This past weekend,with Mumford and Sons playing in the background, we snapped together our 9’X11’ ultimate beer fridge, placing it in the Northwest corner of the BARn.

The walk-in cooler takes cool to a whole new level and in more ways than one!   In the tap room upstairs, we’re going to tap into the kegs in the cooler down below to supply the coldest beer possible.  Just the thought makes us happy!

And other BARn progress continues….

The handmade sidelights have been placed in the West end of the upstairs.  We’re working on painting the exterior doors rustic red, too.

Sam cut a big ol’ hole in the side of the upstairs floor, and designed and built some stairs that are very smooth to climb and descend.  He used new giant oak beams to support the areas where he removed floor joists from the loft floor.

Walls for the bathrooms (guys and gals) have been erected as well as a wall for the office to separate the brewery and the office.  We’re using the tin from the roof to line some parts of the BARn walls.

Soon to come…more plumbing, ducts, heat and electricity.

To top things off, my duties as chair of the Missouri Association for Healthcare Public Relations and Marketing organization came to an end last week.  MAHPRM recognized me with a gift they thought I might enjoy and use—two tap handles with our name on them.  Staff members at the Missouri Hospital Association designed a logo for the handles.  They won’t know until we unveil our new logo how close they came to what we’re planning to use!