In August 2011, we were thrilled to move into one of Scottsville's historic properties as our permanent location and begin construction. Originally built as a tobacco warehouse, this 1839 4 story brick building proved to be just the type of space were were looking for! On the North end we were able to renovate a smaller area which had previously been used as a medical office into our tasting room, restroom & office. The larger southern part of the building has become the home for the actual production, or beer making, portion of our business.
Currently, we are still brewing beer on our original pilot system which has been tweaked from its ability to produce 45 bvarrels a month to 60.
For those who may not know the basics of brewing, our pilot system consists of 3 large kettles which sit on burners under a copper ventilation hood. The first kettle serves as the hot liquor kettle where the desired amount of water is brought to a specific temperature. The water in the hot liquor kettle is then slowly transferred into the mash tun (this is the second kettle in the lineup) and poured over grains that are at the bottom. While in the mash tun, the water pulls the sugars out of the grains which are stirred with a housemade mash paddle. At this point the sugar water is transferred to the third and final kettle, the boil kettle where hops are added. The mixture is allowed to cool and is transferred to a barrel for fermentation. Most of the beers we produce, currently only ales, take about 2-3 weeks to ferment
Currently we have a temperature controllled fermentation room where 22 basic barrels in various stages of fermentation are being carefully monitored and controlled. Once a beer has reached the desired fermentation level, it is usually put into a brite tank, a large stainless steel tank that forces carbonation into the beer. For some of our special releases that are bottled, the beers do not go into the brite tank. Instead they are bottled and have priming sugar added at which point the yeast eats the added sugar and produces carbonation as a by-product.
By summer's end 2013, we plan on this space housing a much larger brew system - while the specifics of this system are not set in stone as of yet, the idea is that we will have the same basic type of system as the pilot system but it will consist of 3 kettles that are twice the size of the current ones, allowing our production to double to 150 barrles produced a month. Fermentation will be brought out of the room we currently have and into the large open brewery space where barrels with a temperature control feature built into them will be housed.