Thursday, July 28, 2011

Touring our lil' Brewery

Greetings, all!

Due to the large number of emails, Facebook posts, and Tweets requesting info about tours, I thought it might be wise of me to put a post here to explain ourselves; to explain just why the hell we haven't scheduled any public tours lately.

Let me cut to the chase here: it's all your fault! You wonderful, craft-beer drinking folks are out-pacing not only us, but every other small brewery who supplies the goods to our lovely city. We are brewing brewing brewing to keep up. We literally work every day to produce as much beer as we can. Not that we're complaining. We love our jobs. But this workload doesn't leave us much time for offering tours.

The value of offering tours to our devoted drinkers is immeasurable, we're not missing that point. But our main focus is - and always will be - brewing the best damn lagers we possibly can. All four people on our staff are devoted to this singular goal. All of our resources and money are dedicated this singular goal. Everything else comes after this singular goal is met.

Allow me to propose a solution to this (awesome) problem. For our part, we'll continue to focus on our brews, that's why we're all here, after all. And we cross-our-hearts-hope-to-die promise that we will schedule some public tours as soon as we can (we'll post them on on Twitter and Facebook). For your part, please continue to buy and drink craft beer. The more beer we sell -> the more people we can hire -> the more resources we'll have -> more public tours!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

our walk to work today

Nothing will stop us from brewing beer. Not even a historical midwestern snowstorm that has pretty much the entire city of Chicago shut down. Behold, I documented for you what it was like to walk to the brewery today. Before we even left the back gate...

At first we tried to walk down the sidewalks. The winds caused incredible drifting and the sidewalks were nigh unpassable.

Phelps took to leaping through the drifts, which probably wouldn't have lasted long before his tiny heart gave out. So we moved out into the street. We didn't see any cars ourselves, but we were able to walk in tire tracks, so someone managed to get where they were going this morning.

Neighbors were out all over the place, starting to dig out.

We worked long and hard for many years to have this privilege of living just a few blocks from work. We almost never drive our car. And today, no one else is driving their car either.

This is the west side of our building. Huge drifts. Fortunately, the snow had drifted off of the sidewalks on the north side of the building (our side).

Phelps once again engages his leaping skillz to get into the brewery door.

See the joy on this face? Beer does that.

Our first mash-in for the day. No snowstorm can keep us from puttin' some Krank in the tank!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

When good friends join powers, listen for the BOOM!

When Doug and I moved to Chicago in 1999, our first priority was to seek out the beer crowds. As you may know, Chicago is loaded with beer legends, authors, aficionados, and of course, geeks. We had no trouble finding a wealth of new friends who shared our obsession. Counted among them is Pete Crowley. At the time, he was the well-known brewer at Rock Bottom (State/Grand). His hospitality at Mug Club meetings and at beer events was unmatched. His friendship and support while we were starting up our brewery easily makes up for all the times he's pissed me off.

Around the same time, we also became friends with Steve Mosqueda and Sean Benjamin. Doug homebrewed with both of them, and we became staunch fans of The Neo-Futurists, the Northside theater in which they both performed. They are also the founders of The Drinking and Writing Brewery, a mash-up of theater, thought, writing, and drinking. For a while the D/W Brewery made its home in various beer bars for it's on-location performances. They even staged a show that ran for 8 weeks right in our own brewery! Oh, the (loss of) memories...

Steve, Sean, and Pete have been working together for a long time, but now, they've officially set up house together at Haymarket Pub & Brewery! Last Saturday, we finally hauled our sorry butts all the way down to Randolph and Halsted to check the place out and watch Steve and Sean perform Drinking and Writing Volume III: To Cure a Hangover.

So, full disclosure: Steve, Sean, and Pete are dear friends of ours and Haymarket has already poured many, many kegs of Krankshaft. Now that that's out of the way, if you haven't visited the brewpub and seen the show, what are you waiting for?!? The atmosphere is classy, yet cozy. The staff is friendly and thoughtful. The beer list is amazing (Pete's beers are fermenting right now and will be available soon). The menu features not one, but several vegan dishes - including one for kids! (swoon) And as usual, the D/W show was hilarious.

If you're looking for something fun to do on a Saturday afternoon - and you need to know how to manage the stinky, painful results of a night of voracious drinking, check out Drinking and Writing Volume III: To Cure a Hangover. The show runs from January 1 through February 5, 2011; Saturdays at 4pm. Buy tickets here.