It’s crazy how fast 2015 has gone by! The last year has brought a lot of changes at Kretschmann Brewing Co.
At the end of 2014, we had recently reopened our brewery with its new taproom on Frederick Street. With four taps we had a small selection of our beer and root beer. Since then we have added more taps and expanded our menu to add locally crafted guest beer. Over time we continued adding more of our brews, and now are up to twelve taps, with a rotating variety of Kretschmann beer, and fifteen sodas. We’ve also added some wonderful wines, cider, meads, and spirits from our neighbors at Hardwick, Homestead, Crave, and Sons of Liberty.
Our new taproom has a great improvement over our last space, with room not only for our patrons to enjoy our beer by the glass, but also to play games with our new friends at Tabletop Revolution! We are thankful to the group’s moderator Art for introducing us to such fun people. We’ve also been happy to host musical events on our stage and got to know some wonderful and talented musicians from the area. And just recently we’ve added creative nights in the taproom and seen some great paintings by attendees!
As we got busier this year, we added more open hours, and needed to bring in some helpers! So we hired two great beertenders – Ben and James, to keep those glasses filled. They have been growing into their roles and are now assisting in different parts of the brew process.
This past spring, we expanded our space again with the addition of our outside beer garden. With the help of our neighbor Suzy from the Lock-out, we added plantings for a welcoming entrance by our new garden gate. We were very lucky that the town of Webster added a new parking lot behind the police station and a new extension of the river walk by French River park. Both parts of Webster’s downtown revitalization effort make the downtown a more beautiful, more accessible place to visit.
With all these improvements, we welcomed more people into the beer garden, celebrating our second anniversary/grand opening, hosting more and larger bands under our tent, and held our first annual Oktoberfest. This event was our largest to date, with music, kids’ crafts, food, team competitions, and where we served over 850 drinks! Throughout the summer we’ve seen many people join us outside, enjoy something tasty from one of the visiting food trucks, and hang out by the fire pits with friends. With this year’s unusually warm weather, we saw our patrons enjoying the beer garden even into December! We are looking forward to utilising the garden for more fun events in 2016.
2015 was also the inaugural year of our stein club! We started with 50 members, and expanded it up mid-year to include 20 more. Over the course of 2015 we got to know our members and have enjoyed seeing the friendships that they have created by their presence at KBC! Our 70 memberships have just been renewed/purchased for 2016 and we are looking forward to another year with you.
Lastly, we’ve worked hard this past year to increase both the quantity and quality of our beer. We were thrilled to have eight of our taps dedicated to Kretschmann beer recently, and this past fall at the Great International Beer & Cider Competition, our Hefeweizen won a silver medal! We are in the process of upgrading to a larger brew system right now to keep up with ever-increasing demand.
This has been a year full of changes for us, and we are filled with gratitude to our customers, neighbors, and friends for being a part of our business. We have more exciting plans for the next year, and can’t wait to share them with you in 2016!