June 2013 Freetail2 Update
Given the interest in breweries and brewery start-ups these days, I’m going to try to be as forthcoming and transparent about Freetail2 along the way. Hopefully it should provide an interesting glimpse into the process for those who may dream of starting a brewery themselves, and for folks who are just interested in what we’re up to. I can tell you, that this blog is every bit as open as I am with external folks about this project. I usually direct media inquiries about our expansion plans here as well. So this is absolutely the first place for Freetail2 news.
So, what’s up with Freetail2?
I’m happy to say we’ve identified a property we are really excited about and are engaged in negotiations with the building owner for a lease or purchase. I’m not ready to reveal a specific location or even which part of the state it is in other than to confirm it is in the San Antonio metropolitan area (as I’ve previously stressed). It’s in a building with a whole lot of character and I’m really excited at the prospect of making Freetail beer there. Keep your fingers crossed we can work out a deal.
We’ve also begun the process of identifying equipment manufacturers and internally formulate our vision of what makes a good distributor, since we’re going to need one to bring our beer to the market. On the point of distribution, I will say that our vision isn’t to cast a super-wide geographic net from the outset. When Freetail beer does start becoming available for wholesale, you can anticipate the vast majority being available only in the San Antonio area at first. Once we can get our feet wet with selling beer at the wholesale level (keeping in mind, this is a new business line for us) then we can begin rolling out to other Texas markets as supply & demand dictate. With all due respect to our friends from outside of Texas, our vision is to satisfy demand in Texas before a drop is available in other states. Texas is a big state, so it’s quite possible that will never happen. For comparison, Real Ale makes about 50,000 barrels per year right now (5 times the legal limit of what we’d be allowed to produce as a brewpub).
Stay tuned for more updates on the progress of Freetail2. In addition to sharing the process of building a second brewery, I’ll share more of our business philosophy as we transform from a single-unit brewpub to a brewery available in the wholesale market. The transition should be fun if nothing else!