Last week we took delivery of a brand new (to us) 25HL brewhouse and 6 additional 25HL FVs.
Currently we’ve been maxed out brewing 30HL per week on our 10HL dairy tank system with 2 x 20HL FVs and 5 x 10HL FVs.
If anyone’s ever visited the brewery, you’ll know our dairy tank brewhouse is very basic, and that’s the way we like it! Little moving parts = less to break. Some things aren’t ideal, but we average a mash efficiency of around 85%. There are some constraints though, our rectangular kettle makes whirlpool additions impossible and we’re having to brew over consecutive days to fill our double size FVs.
We’ve always invested more heavily in our cold-side equipment than in any hot-side stuff, because you can make really good wort on pretty basic kit, but you can’t make really good hoppy beer with poor quality cold-side equipment.
We ended up going for a system from a cask brewery in England that had closed down. We now have a 50HL direct fire HLT, 40HL German made mash tun (with side manway) and a 30HL direct fire kettle. It’ll take us a few weeks to commission, but once we’re up and running we’ll be able to double our weekly production to 60HL with the same amount of effort.
Since January, we’ve been putting about 70% of our beer in keg. Most is going to GB through our partnership with Cave Direct. With a small but increasing amount of permanent lines opening up, we’ve had to keep our customers supplied with a steady stock of beer. That’s meant our web shop has been a bit scarce and we’ve not has as many cans out in the wild as we’d like.
Here's some pictures of the new tanks going in, big thanks to Frederick Jones beside us for letting us use their loading bay to offload the container after we had a few struggles with the telehandler.
In addition to the new brewhouse and FVs, we also now have a proper control panel and glycol system to make monitoring fermentation a bit easier for the production team.
Here's some pics of the action.