Getting close to brewing…

We’re getting close here folks… It’s been 3 weeks since the glorious arrival of our brewing system, and we’ve been working diligently to get it up and running. I’m in a bit of a daze with everything that’s been happening, so here are some photo highlights…

01

Standing up the kettle

02

Peeling off the plastic

03

Cleaning up

04

Passivating fermenters

05

Running water through the sparge arm

Tim and Rhett plumbed the brewhouse together themselves, because they’re handy like that. Once the plumbing got hooked into it, we were pretty ecstatic to run water through everything.

The electrical and steam work necessary to get the thing running is pretty extensive. We’ve got a good crew working on all this, but it takes a fair amount of time to get everything working.

06

Piping below

07

Piping above

08

Perty lights shining down on the tanks at night

09

More perty lights

Just yesterday, we were able to test fire the boiler, and it worked! We have steam!! Super exciting. And we have power to the grain auger now too. Speaking of which, Tim and Rhett installed the auger themselves, which turned out to be a pretty complicated project.

10

Insert badass grinding photo here

11

The grain auger in all its glory

We also had our draft system installed, as well as our CO2 tank and all the connections.

12

Taps galore!

The refrigeration unit on our walk-in cooler is finally done, and the cooler is now operational! Exciting stuff.

In addition to getting the brewhouse up and running, we’ve been working on making the taproom pretty. The firewall/drywall is all finally complete, which means I’ve been painting… a lot.

13

Blank canvas

14

Painting all the way up to these tall ceilings is great fun…

15

Painting really huge garage doors… also good fun. I did not like doing this.

16

Worth it though!

The paint job in the taproom is really coming along. I’d post a picture, but there’s a lot of stuff in the way, and I’m really, really tired. Good excuse, yes? Suffices to say, it looks awesome, and also I learned that I despise painting door frames.

Other things that have happened. We had a concrete pad poured outside for our glycol chiller and condenser for the walk-in. We had a tree bulb-out poured too and we planted this stupid tree:

17

Stupid tree.

It was big and heavy and it made Tim and Rhett cranky.

Also, we put glycol in our chiller and tested it for leaks. The drums were large and unwieldy and it was cold out. Cranky.

18

Cranky glycol filling

I’ve been ordering ingredients and brewery chemicals up the wazoo. A lot of it has been delivered already, and we’re still waiting on the rest. We should have everything we need in the building by the time we’re ready to start brewing. Tim has been working diligently on cleaning the tanks so we’re set to go.

19

I’ve never owned so much malt in my life!

And on top of that… I’veĀ  never done so much paperwork in my life. Seriously, I knew it would be a lot of paperwork to get this thing going, but it’s even more than I could have possibly imagined. But, it’s going well, and we should have everything in order so we can start brewing.

So what needs to happen now? Well, we need to get this brewing system running so we can make beer. The last of the electrical work is being completed as we speak, and should be done soon. The steam piping is done, and I believe there are a few last bits of plumbing work to be completed. Once all that is done, we can call in for inspections on the brewing area. The taproom isn’t completed yet, so this will just get us to a partial C.O., which I need to finish up our ABC licensing with the state, which will allow us to get brewing while we finish building the bar and making the place look pretty.

It’s a lot of work, a million things going on at once, and it’s exhausting. I’m pretty braindead. But it’s all coming together and we will be making beer soon. Very soon.

I know you’re all dying to hear a grand opening date, but we can’t set it until we know when we’ll be able to brew our first batch. But we’re extremely close to that point now! So stay tuned!!

    4 comments

  1. Scott says:

    LOOKS FRIGGIN” GREAT!!!!! Really excited for you guys. Let me know if/when you need help.

  2. Linda Weber says:

    Very, very impressive. You guys make a great team who dreamt big dreams! Very proud of both of you:)

  3. Tom Boris says:

    C’mon Steph, we are waiting on a status update…it’s been almost a month.
    I feel like an addict following the progress you guys are making

  4. Lorena and Rich says:

    Wow! You have come so far and almost a reality! Can’t wait to hear just how much everyone likes your brew! Cant wait to visit! You rock! Only success for Twin Leaf!

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