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Sarah Ward

How a Brewery Works: 11 Facets of How a Brewery Works

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Learning how a brewery works is an important part of learning how to open up a brewery. How a brewery works is a mix of everything that goes into a brewery business. That includes brewery cleaning supplies, brewery staff, the cost to open a brewery, beer expiration, and how a brewery fits into the different types of bars

From how to work at a brewery to the brewery manager job description, there is plenty to learn about how a brewery works. It includes brewery management software, and absolutely a brewery business plan. 

In this BinWise blog post, we’ll walk you through some of the main steps of how a brewery works. We’ve covered many of these in depth in other posts, this serves as your main guide to these steps, all in one place. 

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Learning How a Brewery Works

When it comes to learning how a brewery works, it’s easiest to think of the steps in terms of when they come up. These 11 facets of how a brewery works happen roughly in this order. Some of them may get switched around, and you may find other steps that crop up for your specific brewery plans. 

11. Opening A Brewery 

Opening a brewery is the first step, and an ongoing process. It starts with a brewery business plan, and choosing the design and overall goal of your brewery business. You have to start with a firm foundation of what you want your brewery to be, and how you want to build your business. 

10. Hiring Employees 

Hiring employees comes up along the way of opening your brewery. The average brewery in the U.S. has around 10.8 employees. You’ll want brewers, a manager, someone who understands accounting, and general customer service employees. Everything beyond that will depend on the size of your brewery, and the functions you’re looking to fulfill. 

9. Setting Up Management 

Setting up management might be as simple as deciding that you, as the brewery business owner, will be the manager. If, however, you want to hire someone, you’ll need to plan out your management structure with more precision. How you work with employees in the management structure will make the difference between a good brewery and a great one. 

8. Procuring Brewing Supplies 

Procuring brewing supplies needs to come before many of the other physical steps of opening and operating a brewery. Yes, you’ll need a location secured before you buy up supplies. After you’ve found your spot and gotten your licensing squared away, however, you’ll be ready to start stocking up. 

7. Setting Up Equipment 

Setting up your brewery equipment will be one of the most tangible steps that gets you headed toward brewing your first batch. This will involve cleaning up your space and deciding on your layout. You can check out other breweries for this plan, and find what works best for your location.

6. Brewing Your First Batch 

Brewing your first batch is an exciting moment in your brewery business set up. Your customer satisfaction ratings will be based on how your brews turn out. The first batch isn’t going to be perfect, and you’ll find what works along the way. The first batch, however, is the start of everything you’ll make down the road. 

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5. Marketing Your Brewery 

Marketing your brewery is key to getting it up and running. From small business marketing to understanding the importance of branding, there’s a lot you need to learn. Brewery business branding revolves around making your business unique and exciting. Business marketing comes along once you know what makes your business unique. 

4. Setting Up Your Taproom 

Setting up your taproom might be a part of the set up that comes with equipment and brewing supplies. It is a separate part of your business in the sense that it’s a customer-facing space with a different main goal. It’s where you can get heavy on design aspects and lean into your brewery business brand. 

3. Choosing Highlighted Brews 

Choosing some of your best brews to highlight in your taproom as beer on tap will give you something special for customers. You can also highlight brews at different times of the year. This is a key way to emphasize your brews and showcase your talents. 

2. Building a Menu 

Building a menu for your taproom should revolve around the brews you’re offering. You can mix up beer food pairings, like a craft beer food pairing menu. For dessert options, lean into beer and chocolate pairing choices. They make for a sweet dessert menu treat. 

1. Building a Customer Base

Building a customer base will be a long-term goal for your brewery. From the beginning, you can work on it by providing specialized customer service. You could even offer a rewards program or a referral discount. Draw in the right customers, and use your unique qualities as a brewery to keep them coming back.

"Key Takeaway: Learning how a brewery works is important for everyone working in or around a brewery, whether you’re the owner, manager, brewer, or taproom assistant."

Frequently Asked Questions About Brewery Works

Our answers to these frequently asked questions will give you even more insight into how a brewery works. From the brewing process itself to the work of a brewery manager, we’ve got your curiosities covered. 

What are the Four Stages of the Brewing Process?

The four stages of the brewing process are mashing, separation, boiling, and fermentation. Mashing is the bringing together of water and malt. The mix of the two results in the wort. The separation process is the straining of the wort from the remaining malt solids. 

Boiling helps to sterilize the wort and prepare the yeast. It’s also when hops are introduced to the mix. Fermentation comes along as the final step to bring the mix together and let it settle with the right microbes. That helps to make a beer you want to drink.

Do Breweries Make a Lot of Money?

Breweries have high earning potential, with a general profit margin of between 74% and 92% profits on the brews alone. It takes a few years of hard work to turn a profit. With that effort and patience, a brewery has the potential to make a lot of money. 

What Is the Main Output of Brewery Operations?

The main output of brewery operations is beer, but it also spills into educating people about beer, and bringing together beer lovers. Ultimately, the main output of brewery operations is sharing a love of good beer. 

What Does a Brewery Manager Do?

A brewery manager oversees the daily operations and long-term goals of the brewery. They are closely involved with every aspect of how a brewery works. 

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Brewery Works: Into the Brew

Learning how a brewery works is important for everyone working in or around a brewery. Whether you’re the owner, manager, brewer, or taproom assistant, this blog post is the place for you. It helps you prepare to open the doors of the business and run it smoothly.

When you’re ready to get started, reach out to BinWise, BlueCart, and Revolution Ordering. The BinWise Pro platform paired with BinScan gives you control over your inventory program. BlueCart’s order management system eases your reorder point stress. Revolution is designed for enterprise businesses, for the time when you’re ready to expand your locations.

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