Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!

Happy Holidays from Hess Brewing!

Below I've loaded up a couple videos that should warm you up like a good holiday craft brew. So smoke 'em if you got 'em and drink your glasses to the bottom. I hope you enjoy these videos as much as I did.
Stay safe & warm and have a great holiday weekend!

Jimmy Fallon + The Roots + The Muppets Singing "12 Days of Christmas"

Special Agent Jack Bauer Interviews Suspect Smuggling Packages

"Do You Hear What I Hear?" by the Bowen Beer Bottle Band

Monday, December 14, 2009

The Complete Guide to Opening a Nanobrewery.

Here is a little list of things you need to accomplish if you feel like you wanna open up a nanobrewery of your own. I guess it is relevant for a full scale brewery too. I actually made this list for JC of Trillium Brewing, who will probably be going down the smaller scale road like us.

 Brewery Licenses/Permits/Etc:

Local /County Government:

Planing Department: this is where you gotta go to make sure you can actually open up a brewery at your desired location. If not you'll have to appeal to the government and get Conditional Use Permit.

Department of Environmental Health: If you are going to have a tasting room you'll have to deal with your local DEH. Make sure you get someone that knows what they are talking about.

State Board of Equalization: You need to have a seller's permit which is a local/county run deal.

Business License: A license to actually do business in your city.

Building Permit: If you are doing any serious construction this will be needed. Sometimes even for smaller jobs too.

State Government: 

Department of Health: if you are opening up a wholesale food processing facility, which is the category a microbrewery falls into, they will need to approve you facility.

Alcoholic Beverage Control Board: This is the basic license application. We have a type-23 microbrewery license. We have all the same rights as a type-01 license holder except the fee is considerably less.

Paperwork you'll have to file: Personal Affidavit, Additional Affidavits, Personnel Questionnaire, Corporate Questionnaire (if you are an LLC/ Corp), Diagram of Brewing Facility, Zoning Paperwork, Consideration Point (i.e. schools, churches, etc.), Residence (i.e. if you are close to non-commercial buildings), Signature Sheet (for LLC/Corp), and Tied-House Restriction Paperwork. All in all about 22 pages of paperwork.

Excise Tax Division of BOE: An excise tax permit is required as well. They require a bond as collateral.

LLC or Corporate Articles of Incorporation: Done through a lawyer and usually a yearly fee associated with this as well ($800-1000 per year)

Federal Government:

IRS Employee ID Number: This is just to keep track of your business taxes. Easy to obtain, just a few pages of paperwork. I think it can be done through their website.

Alcohol & Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau: They require a collateral bond for taxes and you need to pay taxes on every barrel of beer you produce and sell. Minimum of $1,000 bond is needed as collateral.

Paperwork you'll have to file: Brewer's Notice, Brewer's Bond, Personnel Questionnaire, Power of Attorney (for LLC/Corp.), Pay.Gov User Agreement, Environmental Information, Quarterly Excise Tax Payment Procedures Checklist, Supplimental Water Quality Information, Signing Authority (for LLC/Corp.), Legal Description of the Brewery, Description of Security, and a Diagram of the Facility.

 I hope this is insightful for anyone looking to get in the brewing game.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

New Logo Direction.

The older look.

This is our newest look.

As you can see we've given the logo a little bit of swagger. Some new swoops and a very fancy "E."

Let us know what you think about the logo. Questions and comments are welcome. Thanks!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Cold Room Set-Up

We finally got around to putting the cold room together. We got a little side tracked after finding out that we are going to have to install two more sinks in our space. Do you think it is a coincidence that the acronym for the Department of Health is D'OH!? I find it highly suspicious. Highly.

Anyways, we have to install a floor sink, so we had about six plumbers come in last week to give us estimates on how much it is going to cost to install one and it looks like it's going to be in the $1,250 to $2,700 range. The deal with a floor sink is when serving any sort of food or beverage to citizens of San Diego we need to have an air gap between the plumbing and the sewer, that way we don't get sewage backing up back into our sinks. A little something called "Backflow Prevention."

The cold room was really easy to assemble, it was like a gigantic piece of IKEA furniture. Just needed a bit of elbow grease to lug the pieces around into the correct position and a little deductive reasoning to determine where the ceiling pieces and voilà! Instant* cold room.

Here are some semi-timelapsed photos from the build out:

*Instant being about 4 hours + a 14 hour round trip to Phoenix.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The Cold Room.

I used to enjoy twitter, now I am a believer. It was through twitter I came across a listing on Craigslist for a walk-in cold room for cheap. It had fourteen tap handles (probably more than we'll ever need, but extra space can't hurt) and two glass door merchandisers. Really a prefect fit for our size of operation. Thanks so much @abeeraday for the heads up! 

I called up Iron King on a Monday to begin negotiations and figure out some logistics. We would probably need to rent a 26' truck from Penske and get a car trailer for the ride back. Luckily our good friends came through and we were able to borrow a 12' trailer + a full size pick-up.
He decided to take off some extra cash since we were going to drive out there and pick it up ourselves. So we began our 14 hour journey at 5:00AM on Friday.

Here are some pictures from the journey:

5:00 AM 

Don Quixote would love this place.

Raw Power.



Rising Up from the Ashes.

7th St, 11 AM.

Almost Full.

By the hair of our chinny chin chins.

Long Distance.

Getting Dark.


I'll be sure to post picture from the build out and the completed cold room. Unfortunately it is going to take us a little long to get everything up since we just talked to the DEH on monday and it turns out we need to install a floor sink, a mop sink, and a hand washing sink. So that will put as at a total of 7 sinks in our small space. We will be sure to have clean hands and pint glasses though!