Holy crap - we’ve reached our goal! And you did it in 10 days!
From the bottom of our hearts, thank you to everyone who pledged and spread the word to make the People’s Fermenter a reality. We’re floored and - to be honest - surprised by this outpouring of support for TWB. We’re so lucky to be part of this community – thank you, thank you for your generosity!
We can’t wait to create a People’s Beer as our inaugural batch. It’s gonna be rad.
As for all of you who haven’t pledged yet - there’s still time to be part of the coolest thing to hit Kitchener since last winter (too soon?). But what are you going to do with all this newfound wealth, you ask? Well, since the People’s Yacht, and the People’s Gold-Plated Rolls Royce kinda go against what we’re about, we’re going to use the money to start a barrel program so we can begin aging some high gravity and sour beers from the People’s Fermenter in some good ol’ oak.
The sooner we start, the sooner we'll get to taste the beer!
Who are we?
The members of Together We’re Bitter Co-op Brewing have been waiting far too long for a quirky craft brewpub in the heart of Kitchener. You know the kind we’re talking about - one that serves fresh, delicious hand-crafted beer paired with gastropub fare in a relaxed, unique environment.
Well, we got tired of waiting for some ambitious entrepreneur to do the job so we decided to do it ourselves.
What excites us most about doing this is that we get to put our values into practice. The craft beer and local food movements - two of our passions - are centered on building a prosperous community. We want to channel our community’s creativity into an endeavor that creates good jobs, supports local food producers, and makes Kitchener a more vibrant place.
That’s why we’re opening Kitchener’s first co-operative brewpub - we thought it would be bitter…er, better if we used a business model that complements those values.
The TWB team has been busy planning every aspect of the brewpub for over a year now. Everything from developing recipes for our year-round and seasonal beers, to working on zoning requirements and brewing equipment we’re going to use. We’ve gone over everything approximately 748 times and are ready to hit the ground running.
Why are we doing a Kickstarter campaign?
The worker-owner and community supporter members have put in as much as we possibly can and our credit union is helping with the rest. However, we know that bank risk committees in head offices aren’t too keen on the extra ten grand we plan on dropping on a fermenter dedicated exclusively to brewing experimental beers.
We didn’t want to give up or delay the dream of playing around with malt, hops, water, yeast, and a host of interesting ingredients so we sat down to figure out how we could get this fermenter without having to wait for months and months. And that’s when we came up with the bright idea of seeing if you could help us out with this key piece of equipment. With it, we’ll brew up creative concoctions and come up with new offerings for all of you wonderful people. We’ll call it the People’s Fermenter and it will be glorious.
Where is TWB located?
In the hearts and minds of all craft beer lovers.
Seriously, though, this is a good question. We’re currently negotiating a tricky situation - we have to have our financing to sign a lease but we have to have a location to get our financing. Curious, that. We’re kicking tires and looking under the hood of a few sites in downtown Kitchener and hope to have an announcement about that before this Kickstarter campaign ends. Stay tuned!
What are we going to do with your money?
We need to keep our experimental brews at just the right fermentation temperature and we don’t want to tie up our main fermenter for these beers. So we’ll need a shiny ten hectolitre fermenter with a glycol jacket and all the piping and fittings. This is going to run us about eight grand. The other two thousand will be spent purchasing, shipping, and paying taxes on all the limited edition TWB gear on offer during this campaign. If you’re all feeling particularly generous and end up pushing us past our goal, we would really love to go wild and buy a few barrels to start our barrel-aging program right away. Then beers like our Belgian Quad and Imperial Spiced Porter can start their aging process sooner. And you can drink them sooner.
What are you getting out of the deal?
First and foremost, you’ll get to be part of making Kitchener’s first co-operative brewpub a reality and you’ll be part of the TWB family for life. But you also get to share this news with the rest of the world – to help you do that, we’ve developed limited edition gear just for this campaign. Look to the panel on the right for descriptions and below for photos of what we’ve put together.
How does this Kickstarter thing work?
It’s pretty straightforward, thankfully. We set our goal of $10,000. Then we set our deadline - one month – and came up with the pledge levels.
This is where you come in. Contribute what you can – and rest assured that your credit card gets charged only if we meet our goal by the deadline we set. If we don't make our goal, your credit card will not be charged and we won’t get money for the People’s Fermenter. Also, no one will receive any of the limited edition TWB gear and that’ll make us all pretty sad.
If we do meet our goal, you’ll get the eternal gratitude of the entire TWB team as well as all the cool stuff promised.
What else can you do to help?
We’re so glad you asked. Together We’re Bitter is a community focused co-op and, as such, we'll create plenty of opportunities to involve our beer family in our harebrained projects - for now, we just need you to please SPREAD THE WORD far and wide. Help us get our message out via Twitter, Facebook, Blackberry Channel... Even Tindr or telegram if that's your cup of tea (or pint of beer).
When will TWB be open?
Another great question. Building a brewery and getting it licensed takes some time. We put together a 6-8 month timeline that kicks off once we secure our location. Since we are planning on getting our location before the end of this year, we’re planning to open our doors in the summer of 2015. Help us make it happen!
$1 -- THANK YOU!
You get a giant thank you from the bottom of our giant hearts!
$10 -- NAME ON OUR GREAT WALL
That’s right, not just any wall. Ben, Greg, and Rob have been collecting interesting pieces of wood from around Kitchener that they will be turning into a decorative wall that acknowledges all the people who made the brewpub possible.
$35 -- NAME ON OUR GREAT WALL
+ CO-OP TEE
Not only will you let everyone know that you’re part of the TWB family, but you’ll also look and feel fabulous in the process. We sought out some of the finest t-shirts made on this continent, and made them even better with a tasteful message on the front and our awesome logo on the back.
$50 -- NAME ON OUR GREAT WALL
+ BREWERY TOUR
Be part of an exclusive tour with a small group through the brewery we built with our bare hands before anyone else gets to see it! We’ll clean off all the blood, sweat, and tears first. Once it’s complete, we’ll set up a time that works, and you’ll get to poke around behind the scenes and hear our story firsthand. We’ll also probably hug you out of gratitude. A lot.
$100 -- NAME ON OUR GREAT WALL
+ CAPYBARA CLUB GROWLER & 2 TULIP GLASSES
We have a one-barrel pilot brewery that we will be using to determine what experimental brews to put in the People’s Fermenter. With your 750ml Capybara growler, you’ll have exclusive access to these ever-changing pilot beers. Of course you’ll have to buy the beer but trust us, it’ll be worth it. Your feedback will help influence what experimental beers get brewed and put in the People’s Fermenter.
$250 -- NAME ON OUR GREAT WALL
+ CAPYBARA CLUB GROWLER & 2 TULIP GLASSES
+ BREW WITH THE BREWER
This is a pretty fantastic combo deal. You get the stylish T-shirt, membership to the Capybara Club, AND an exclusive invitation to brew with our brewer, Culum. You’re not gonna want to miss out on this opportunity. He may even let you choose the music. FYI, he vetoes Right Said Fred. We tried.
$500 -- NAME ON OUR GREAT WALL
+ CO-OP TEE
+ CAPYBARA CLUB GROWLER & 2 TULIP GLASSES
+ DESIGN YOUR OWN BEER WITH THE BREWER
Along with exclusive access to our one-barrel pilot brews through the Capybara Club and a super-stylish tee, you get to design a beer alongside our brewer, Culum. He knows his stuff. And so do you, right? So you’ll get to try to boss him around a bit. Tell him what you like and get his feedback. Once you brew your brew, it might get to the People’s Fermenter. If you know your stuff. You do, right?
Risks and challenges
To put it simply, our major risks and challenges are licensing and location. Two members of the TWB team are skilled tradespeople who have a firm grasp on the planning and construction of the brewpub. They’ve developed a set of comprehensive plans and estimates for turning almost any building in Kitchener into a brewery. There’s always the possibility of an increased renovation timeline due to zoning changes, additional building permits, and unforeseen renovations which would cause a delayed opening or increased costs. As much as we’re able to account for and control the variables that go into the construction of the brewery, we have done so.
We’re also aware that obtaining the litany of licenses needed to operate a brewery, retail store, and tied-house restaurant can cause delays if not properly executed. As a result we have developed a plan to ensure that all the requisite paperwork is properly completed in a timely fashion.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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