I Currently Work for a Brewpub/Craft Brewery AMA

David O

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Ok, I have been asked a few times to do an AMA thread. Not sure I will have he time or know all of the answers but here is a little background FYI

I have worked for a family owned business for a little over 35 years. Prior to that I worked in the "family business" Here is a quick job history and most of the jobs I left I was actually transferred to right before we sold that company. I will say I have been blessed through the years!
I started washing dishes at the young age of 13 and moved my way up through the my family owned restaurants where I managed and owned one of the locations.
At 18 I wanted to get out on my own so I strayed working in a Pool Hall (I used to hustle pool) as a Bouncer and eventually went behind the bar where all of the money was made!
At 20 I was asked to help open a bar and was recruited as a manager at a Up Scale Topless Bar. I eventually left that knowing I was going to raise a family
At 21 I was hired by the Family owned Company I am currently with. I started off as a F&B manager of a 36 hole private Country Club, Opened a different businesses for them, was in Fast Food management. The bulk of my career I spent in the Convenience and Gas Industry. I was a multi unit manager for several years and my last 13 years in that industry I did all of the marketing for 168 Convenience stores. This was, what I call my "Rock Star" job. I was ale to do a bunch of things that most people dream of doing. I worked with all of the major companies like AB, Miller, Altria, RJR, Coke, Pepsi, Red Bull to name a few. We sold that company and I went to selling the transportation of fuel and Crude Oil, We sold off part of that company and it was not enough to keep me busy. This was the time I lost my wife and I needed more to do so now at a little over two years on the job I am with Freetail Brewing Company!

AMA on any of my work history!
I will not answer any questions about site moderation!

Thanks,
David O
David O
 

David O

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Beer. On average, how much does it actually cost to produce a pint of beer, on the scale at which a brewery produces beer?
The cost varies depending upon the style and hops used and whether it is canned or kegged. I can say it can average a little under a nickle per ounce.

We do a little under 6,000 barrels per year
 

AK Chip

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Do you have any beer fridge stickers of the beers hanging upside down?
 

David O

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What is your favorite type of beer and also how many spotted birds have you had in a game at one time?
I have many favorites but I actually love and am currently drinking a half pint of of our Belgium IPA. We call it Buffalo Hump 1840

I probably have had a few hundred in play. I completed the limit set and have not had a chance to get them in play although they were available at The All in at the Alamo

As
bp.jpg
 

David O

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Do you have any beer fridge stickers of the beers hanging upside down?
I have some logo stickers and some Texas flag stickers Freetail style. We have them available at our website.

Wow I almost didn't recognize the Avatar. I am working and did not see it was you asking. If you need some you PM me.

David
 

chutracheese

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I hope your brewery is doing okay with the economic slowdown.

What's the hardest part about being in the brewing industry?
 
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David O

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We are doing okay. We did have to layoff a bunch of folks which really sucked. We have the production facility which is losing but we are able to keep up. The Brewpub is losing a bit but we are able to pay the folks we kept on and pay the bills. I think we will come out okay!

The hardest part is distribution. There are so many breweries out there and you have to have a good sales staff and good programs to sell in enough to grow your business. The problem is there are a bunch of fixed costs that you have get paid before you make any money!
 

chutracheese

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Opinion of Macros? Witnessed any shady shit from them? Devil's Backbone is nearby and I've heard some stories about their buyout by InBev.
 

David O

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Opinion of Macros? Witnessed any shady shit from them? Devil's Backbone is nearby and I've heard some stories about their buyout by InBev.
They are cool. I think the craft industry as a whole have really tried to work together. I am pretty open to all areas of the business where most craft brewers work together and hate the Macros. Business wise I think they know what they are doing when comes to marketing. They brew a decent brew but really flavorless when you compare it many of the beers that are out there. Now if you ask one of the Craft Brewers they absolutely hate them. I could go into how they view them and the"common" Beer Drinker but that would be a long post and not something I would enjoy writing about! LOL
 

David O

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How do you feel about the big players (AB, Miller-Coors)?

Beer! Hooooraaaay beer!
I personally love them. They have great programming and I have many friends in the business. I do think hey have lost focus on their core business. It all started with them investing heavily in the old "Malternatives back in the 1990's and more recently with the Seltzers. They have all lost so much share to the Liquor and wine channels of business. Luckily we have been able to maintain
 

David O

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How common is it for small breweries to brew root beer? I've become a huge fan of craft root beer.
For some of the Brewers they do not like doing it. Our Director of Brewing is a purist so he would not do it. We basically had to convince him to brew a good Pilsner that is very drinkable to the average beer consumer. He was against it at first but we realized we are a brewery and we cannot leave out any beer drinker. The average beer drinker does not like the "hoppy beer". This is why we came out with our line extension called Puro Pils

It is not uncommon but generally it is the guys who are trying to gain a little more revenue to pay for the equipment. I love good root beer a well. You need to try Abita root beer from Louisiana
 

abby99

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For some of the Brewers they do not like doing it. Our Director of Brewing is a purist so he would not do it. We basically had to convince him to brew a good Pilsner that is very drinkable to the average beer consumer. He was against it at first but we realized we are a brewery and we cannot leave out any beer drinker. The average beer drinker does not like the "hoppy beer". This is why we came out with our line extension called Puro Pils

It is not uncommon but generally it is the guys who are trying to gain a little more revenue to pay for the equipment. I love good root beer a well. You need to try Abita root beer from Louisiana
I'm almost positive that Abita is the bottled root beer that I've had at Jefferson Tap and Grill in the West Loop area of Chicago (Abita Purple Haze is also on JT's menu). It's outstanding! Barn Town Brewing in West Des Moines, about a mile from my house, brews their own. I wish I could drink a growler of it before it went flat.
 

Saoliver

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No but will try to find it online, just got the diagnose celiac desease a few weeks ago, dont have much experience yet. I appreciate it.
Wife has celiac. She swears by New Belgium Glutiny.

And on topic...David, what is unique about your brewery?

What sets you apart from the others?

What is your flagship beer?

Sorry if these have already been answered. :)
 

chutracheese

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It's slim pickings for gluten free and reduced beer.
Much harder to brew. Get to know a Homebrewer. They can probably make you a better batch than you can find commercially.

Then go get some cider!
 

BarrieJ3

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Who is a little crazier, your chippers or your craft brew seekers?

I never knew the second was a thing, until my brother in law explained how he picks up beer and drives it/ships it all over the US to trade with others, has to keep all his garage fridges stocked.

Follow up question, where’s the best brew come from? I’m very limited in knowledge, and I’m sure it’s quite “mainstream”, but man I can drink from Michigan all day long. Is Texas near the top?
 
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