Building a Brewery

Building R.Shea Brewing: Week 17, Nov 24-30, 2014

Dec 6, 2014

The weeks are ticking by faster and faster.  I'm definitely spending a lot more time at the brewery.  My Dad is too...usually in separate shifts. I went down one day this week to sand some drywall mud only to find out that my Dad beat me to it.  I didn't complain, it's not my favorite job after all.

Due to the longer hours, at night I'm dozing off quicker and quicker at home.  Doing a run or a lunchtime swim is one thing, but ramping up manual labor like this really tires you out.

This week we sanded and primed the outside of the walk-in cooler and a lot of patchwork we made to other walls.  This means that the left half of the building is ready for paint - once we choose a color scheme.  You will notice that my Dad is noticeably absent.  He always ended up sanding when I wasn't here.



Trevor is applying drywall mud to the cooler doorway. This was difficult for him as he wasn’t the one sanding it later…telling him to not put it on ‘too thick’ didn’t really compute.


Trevor applying painters tape to areas not needing paint. This was a good job for him as he is very detail-oriented.


And the painting begins!


Fermentors are taller than my son on a step stool.




Yeah, the place is going to be awesome.


My son cut his first copper pipe! I’m so proud of him.

Gluten Free Beers

A few people have inquired if I'm going to have any gluten-free options.  It didn't initially cross my mind as my circle of friends I see regularly don't have this issue, but then it comes up in the news a lot and I'm running into more and more people with it...so why not?  My wife and I went to the Mustard Seed in Fairlawn to purchase several to try.  I also ran into a few gluten free beer drinkers and quizzed them...beers like Sapporo seem to be a better option than the craft breweries...sorghum just doesn't make as tasty a beer compared to rice.  It seems to be more of a 'odd' taste that comes with that grain.  I like a challenge though.

In talking with gluten-free drinkers, a lot migrate to cider...which then lends itself to issues as 99.9% of all commercial ciders are artificially sweetened to some extent  (I make a great dry, natural cider).  I mean, it's not called a 'cider cooler'...it's hard cider plain-and-simple.  Let's keep it natural.  But then maybe I'm weird...at an early age I gave up sugared-up coffee and teas in favor of the raw versions.


A gluten-free option. It was passable but not great.


My Dad is putting in a lot of hours.  If he is not doing his real job, he is down at the brewery.  Many thanks goes to him.  My kids also did some good work this week.

Next Week

  • Figure out an on-demand water heater to get so I can use less burner to heat water (which means less hood ventilation to suck out heat)
  • Figure out plumbing placement for behind the brew system (filters, on demand water heater, etc).
  • Start putting some focus on figuring out a color scheme for this place as the left half can start being finalized.
  • Assemble brewery plumbing between kettles...the fun part for me.

The coolest part on renting this place, and one that was a major selling point is that since this place used to be many restaurants over the last few decades, the wall I am putting the brewery near has all kinds of plumbing and electrics just ready to get put to use.  I love me some 240V service!  I have two drops just waiting for my on-demand electric heater that I am researching (if only I had three phase...beggars can't be choosers though...)  And I will then have another two drops for the kitchen.  I love this place!

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