Ethan got into this a bit earlier this week, but when writing weekly updates on what’s going on with the brewery it can be easy to forget that “construction is coming along nicely; look, coolers!” is interesting but has no real information on definite dates.
This is partly because we don’t know any definite dates, for anything, and so if you want a concrete answer and not an estimate for any of these then the best I can do is “I don’t know; soon, hopefully!” Even so, I’m going to do my best. I very well may be wrong, so please don’t lynch me if I’m later than originally thought.
tl;dr When can I buy your beer?
Impatient, aren’t you? Fine. If your house is on fire or you or someone you know just had their water break or something, our hope is that we will be selling beer by the end of March.
Now then, there are two main factors that could push this back separately or as some sort of evil Voltron.
Last weekend I was asked when I thought construction would be done. “Mid January,” I told them. This is construction we’re talking about, and we had been told by the end of the year, then mid January, etc. We’re near the end now, though: Johnson & Sons will be 99% done with the construction by Valentine’s Day, which is wonderful news.
The biggest concern right now is our power: things require electricity to run, you see. Electrons go in, air conditioning comes out. You can’t explain that. We’re getting an upgraded service from National Grid, but first they need to replace the current hole-riddled pole. The estimate they gave us for when the new pole would be put in (with the new transformer coming at an unspecified time after that) is 3-4 weeks. If you think this is not a timeframe you want to hear, try being us.
Best estimate: Mid March.
SLA and Other Fun With Government
We were fingerprinted the first Friday in December. We’ve been told by external sources that once the state gets those it’s three to five weeks until you get your approval. Even taking into account the possibility that nothing gets done in December because all employees have gone into a persistent vegetative state rather than be forced to listen to Paul McCartney’s “Wonderful Christmastime” one more time, that’s indicate we’re slightly behind schedule.
However, due to some corrections that were needed and the fact that out of state fingerprints are processed in an especially archaic manner (considering ours were done electronically), that countdown only actually started last week.
Before the SLA will give us a microbrewery permit, though, we need to be given our Certificate of Occupancy by the city. This means the construction has to be done, but thankfully as we understand it the SLA will get our application to the point where they’re waiting on the CofO and then wait, meaning we can send it in when we get it and be ready to go. Hopefully.
Best estimate: We have no way of knowing how long the SLA will take, but we’re going to toss out “mid March.”
I’ve been trying to avoid a weekly Kickstarter update, just because for the most part nothing has changed and I am also aware that not everyone reading this donated. However, now that things have been ordered I think we have a good enough idea to toss out some estimates.
All the physical goods have been ordered. Stickers and coasters are already in our grubby little hands, shirts and hoodies are being taken care of by our neighbor Abaca Press as usual, and glasses and growlers should be done and ready to be picked up in a few weeks. The one sticking point is the growler suits, as the company we ordered from went on vacation just after we put in the order. They’re back now though, so I’d thinkÂ things should be ready by the end of the month.
Now, all Kickstarter projects factor in shipping costs to their reward levels. We had backers from all over the country (and, as I mention frequently, my friend in Glasgow). However, one of the rewards that everyone who donated got was the right to sign the wall in our customer service area. We will absolutely ship your rewards if you’re unable or disinclined to come down, but I have a vision of a Saturday when all of CBW is at the brewery and you all come down to pick things up, meet us, get your high fives, see the brewery and sign the wall. The date of that depends on a number of things, most importantly us having all of the rewards, and so we’ll let you know (via the Kickstarter update interface, so you non-backers won’t have to read anything about this again).
Best estimate: Early March.
Equipment and So Forth
If we had our license, we could be making beer tomorrow. That’s about as awesome a thing as I can think of, right now. Besides meeting Neil deGrasse Tyson, of course. We may not have the electricity we want, but you go to war with the electricity you have and so it would be functional for our purposes. Gas is connected. TheÂ brewing station is sitting atop its pedestal. We have access to grain and hops have been ordered that will last us until the 2012 harvest. Our coolers are done (!) except for some minor sealing in some of them.
We are ready. See you soon, Buffalo.