Industry

We get asked all sorts of questions about what it’s like to make beer and work for a brewery, so today we’re sitting down with our head brewer guy, lab director, and ironic wine snob, Peter Kiley to have him answer a few of your most burning questions.

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Monday Night: How do you go about getting into the brewing industry?

Peter Kiley: There are a few things that you can do to get into the brewing industry. The first is to learn as much as you can independently, which means homebrewing A LOT. The second is to get involved in the beer community and get in the mix. Attend beer festivals, visit breweries and simply reach out to brewers who are already in the field. The third is to make your resume stellar, get it out there and search for brewery internship opportunities to get involved. Also, make sure that you save a lot of money beforehand, because whatever job you have before brewing, will pay more. Although brewing pays very little, the reward is incredible. You get to make an impact on your community doing something that you enjoy. Trust me, there isn’t anything else out there like it. And my last piece of advice is to never give up.

MNB: What is your favorite beer to brew?

PK: My favorite beer to brew is Drafty Kilt, our Scotch Ale. I like it because it’s challenging, and I know that people really enjoy it in the market. Trust me when I say that there isn’t anything better than smelling Drafty Kilt at 5 a.m. during a brew day.

MNB: What is the worst beer name you’ve ever thought of?

PK: The worst name that I’ve thought of for a beer was for a Milk Stout called Pump N’ Dump. (Editor’s Note: We agree. This is one of the worst beer names ever.)

MNB: What beers are you most excited about that are coming out this year?

PK: I’m really excited that we get to re-launch two of our most popular beers from our Black Tie Series for our anniversary party in August: Bed Head (Imperial Coffee India Pale Ale) and Gun Show (Belgian-style Golden Ale). The cool thing about these beers is that they may only be featured in the tasting room and might not make it out into the market.

MNB: It’s your last meal. What is it and what do you pair it with?

PK: That’s an easy one, it’s a cheese pizza. And I’d pair it with another cheese pizza. BUT, if I had to pair it with a beer, that beer would be the first beer I ever homebrewed.

Do you have a question you’d like to see answered by a Monday Night Brewing brewer? Submit your question in the comment section below or send us an email: askabrewer@mondaynightbrewing.com

 

America’s palate is changing. Everyday, more folks are choosing artfully crafted beers that complement their food and expand their taste horizons. Experts are projecting this trend will continue. A crafty bar-owner or restaurateur can capitalize on the craft beer phenomena and increase beer sales with a strong craft beer list. This post will explain how you can craft [oh I’m on a roll now] a craft beer list that will increase beer sales and turn your local beer aficionados into your regulars.

The India Pale Ale is the quintessential craft beer in the last few years. Unfortunately, too many bars seem to think craft beer drinkers always want IPAs because they sell the most. Folks who choose craft beer want to have choices!

“Variety is the spice of life and platitudes will make you money!” — Alexander the Great

Make room for new beers from local breweries.

Offering new and/or small-batch beers shows that you’re in tune with the local craft community and that you’re committed to giving your customers a novel experience. Monitor how quickly it takes you to go through a keg – your customers speak with their wallets, so be sure to reorder the local beers that do well.

Pick beers that match the climate and season.

Increase Beer Sales with warming dark beers in the winter

Increase beer sales with refreshing beers in the summerHot summer days get most craft beer drinkers thirsting for lighter, straw-gold colored beers and fruit-citrus flavors. These characteristics are found commonly in wheat beers such as German weizenbier (including hefeweizen) and Belgian witbier.

Cold winter nights call for dark beers such as stouts, porters, and scotch ales for many. These dark beers are generally higher ABV and contain sweet and smoky flavors that people associate with warmth. They’re perfect when your beer blanket could use an extra layer!

Pick beers that complement the food being served.

Creativity is generally a good thing in craft beer. Subsequently, craft beers can vary substantially within the same style. This makes using a generic beer-food pairing guide difficult for crafts. Breweries such as Bell’s Brewery Inc., Shipyard Brewing Co., Sierra Nevada Brewing Co., and Monday Night Brewing understand that struggle.

For instance, at Monday Night Brewing, we recognize that Fu Manbrew is no ordinary Belgian-style wit. We throw a smidge of ginger into Fu Manbrew which imparts subtle ginger aroma and flavor. Like most Witbiers, Fu Manbrew pairs excellently with fish and citrus fruits. Unlike most Witbiers, Fu Manbrew also pairs fantastically with salads and spicy foods. Monday Night, the previously mentioned breweries, and many others recognize that each beer has its own unique characteristics and shedding light on those variations will help everyone make most of their dining experiences.

Be on the lookout for the next post in this series. We’ll be discussing how to balance mainstream and craft beers to increase beer sales and profits for your bar or restaurant.

We interrupt our normally hard-hitting journalism to bring you a story that will warm your heart and fill your glass. According to Denver Westword, four small Denver brewers all ordered from the same fermenter supplier to save on freight costs.

Freight costs can be pretty steep, depending on where you’re shipping from. We have had to pay over $1000 just to move a few pallets of kegs around. You add those little trips up, and it becomes a meaningful part of your business. Shipping won’t make or break us, but it does get its own line item in our accounting software. From Denver Westword:

In a show of solidarity (not to mention some penny-wise fiscal management) four small brewers are putting in an order for new brewing equipment and tanks in a move that will save them all a chunk of change and help them expand. Copper KettleRenegadeStrange Brewing and Caution are all buying from Premier Stainless Systems, a San Diego-based brewery system designer and manufacturer that supplies hundreds of beer makers around the country.

“Premier said there was no difference on shipping whether we bought four tanks or eight, so we decided to coordinate this together,” says Copper Kettle co-owner Jeremy Gobien. So, instead of paying $1,500 a piece, each brewery will only spend about $400.

Sure, they’re saving a few hundred bucks. But I think the bigger news here is the continued trend of small breweries working together, like Avery and Russian River’s Collaboration Not Litigation Ale. This is an industry like no other.

Drink up.

Image Credit: Facebook

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According to a source at WSBTV, a bill that would allow Sunday liquor sales in Georgia is dead in the water… again. While Sunday Sales has been one of those bills that gets resurrected and then promptly killed every year (like a friendly, lovable zombie), 2011 brought new hope:

Previous efforts to allow Sunday alcohol sales in Georgia have stalled amid a veto threat from former Gov. Sonny Perdue. However, Gov. Nathan Deal has said he would not veto such a measure.

Support among voters has also been mixed, along geographic boundaries. 67% of Metro Atlanta residents are in favor of Sunday sales, while only 31% of South Georgians favor the bill. Georgia is only one of three states that currently doesn’t allow alcohol sales on Sunday from stores.

Georgia’s alcohol legislation has traditionally lagged behind most other states, and allowing Sunday Sales is often seen as a first step in progressing the state to a more alcohol-friendly culture. Perhaps in 2012.

Image source: KaisenVerdant

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A prototype of Apple’s next iPhone was left at a German beer garden by Apple employee Gray Powell. Unfortunately for Apple, Gizmodo found it. And now German airline Lufthansa is getting in on the action. In an open letter to Gray Powell, Lufthansa employee Nicola C. Lange writes:

I recently read in the news that you lost a very special phone at a German beer bar in California. We all know how frustrating it can be to lose personal belongings, especially when it is such a unique item.

At Lufthansa we also noted with great interest your passion for German beer and culture. We thought you could use a break soon — and therefore would like to offer you complimentary Business Class transportation to Munich, where you can literally pick up where you last left off. Upon arrival in Munich, feel free to check out our new Bavarian Beer Garden Business Lounge, and experience the best that Germany has to offer.

Let this be a lesson to you, Gray. Don’t bring top secret hardware with you when you’re out drinking. Or maybe, if you are going to bring top secret hardware with you, try a Belgian beer bar instead. This never would have happened at Brick Store.

According to an AP article:

Two Columbia [Missouri]  sanitation workers who apparently couldn’t stand by and let beer go down the drain allegedly took dozens of cases of expired brew from the city landfill. Police and city supervisors are trying to determine if the salvage was a crime ? theft of city property ? or just a policy violation.

The beer in question included about 700 cases of Budweiser and Michelob Ultra. The good stuff. I can’t imagine what expired Michelob Ultra tastes like. Any guesses?

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Raise your hand if you want to pay more for beer! A tax in Washington State is being considered that would raise the taxes on beer substantially, to 45¢ per 6-pack. Currently the tax is 15¢ per 6-pack.

Fortunately for drinkers of good beer, the tax would only impact breweries brewing more than 15,000 barrels per year. This would not impact microbreweries (as defined by the Brewers Association).

The Mayor of Baltimore might soon propose a similar beverage tax that adds 4¢ to the prices of soda, bottled water, beer, and alcohol.

Budget deficits often require drastic measures. I only ask that we leave beer out of it.

Image source: cabbit