20 Jan

My love of home brewing is at the root of our decision to pursue opening a commercial brewery. This is pretty common among craft breweries. One thing I learned early on is that a brewery involves a lot in addition to actually making beer. At times this has been frustrating, leading to conversations along these lines.

Me: There is so much more to do than brewing, maybe we will need to hire a brewer.
Her: I thought the whole reason we are doing this is so that you can brew.
Me: …

I very much do want to be hands on with the brewing. I think though that talking this particular conundrum through has helped me realize that I enjoy a lot of the other things I am having to learn. Answering Andrea has helped me to be clear about what specifically motivated my initial decision.

Yes, evolving my home brewing to a logical next step, to make and sell at a commercial scale is very thrilling. I love sharing my beer and on my home rig I can only make so much. When people want to pay back my generosity (I will pretty much share with anyone who asks), I am severely limited in what kinds of consideration I can accept.

In addition, I want to build something that is my own. I identify very closely with the act of making things. My home brewing and podcasting, among other things, share this same deep root. I have not yet created anything that can sustain itself. I have either traded away the product of my skills, an arrangement I have largely been satisfied with, or I’ve had the privilege of the security that trade brings to subsidize all my other pursuits.

Realizing this desire to not only make something but set it up in a way that it can sustain itself has really helped me tackle the non-brewing parts of the plan. I have been able to draw a lot of parallels to the less obvious non-making parts of my career in technology, easing some of the stress. I expect I will have still more opportunities to reflect and learn more about myself as we continue the process.

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