WHO WE ARE:
Tin Cannon Brewing Co. started with two experienced craft beer home brewers, John Hilkert and Aaron Ludwig, who decided to turn pro. Their longtime dream was to bring specialty brews to the general public; that dream is coming to fruition in mid-November with the opening of Gainesville, Virginia's first nano-brewery. Tin Cannon’s beers will be passionately and artfully created, kegged, and served onsite. These two owners love brewing classic beer styles as well as other styles that push traditional guidelines.
Aaron: I started brewing in 2006 with a 5-gallon extract kit, like most home brewers. It was a Guinness extra stout clone from Maltose Express in Monroe, CT. I was so pleased with the results of that first batch that I was immediately hooked on the hobby. As an engineer, I’m analytical and always looking for more information. I read every resource I could find and analyzed every batch. How could the beer improve? How could my methods improve? I love to tinker with equipment also, so I would constantly change my brewing setup, adding or modifying equipment. I think you home brewers out there know what I’m talking about! My current home system is a 10-gallon electric keggle system with a homemade control panel.
John: I’ve been brewing as a hobby for the past 4 years, starting out with a store-bought beer kit. After some successful brews I teamed up with Aaron, who taught me advanced brewing techniques on his custom-built system. With the successful brews under my belt, I began to invest in additional equipment to piece together my own home system. First was a turkey fryer with an electric controller for Brew-in-a-Bag (BIAB) brewing. I then moved on to a 10-gallon brew kettle and a Rubbermaid cooler for a mash tun. At the same time, I built a copper wort chiller and used a fountain pump to cool the wort. I even converted a kitchen refrigerator into a keg fridge. I began kegging quickly at that point and haven’t bottled since, except for special occasions.
WHY WE ARE OPENING OUR OWN BREWERY:
Aaron: John and I both have a passion for brewing craft beer and we are proud of our recipes. We want to have the opportunity to create something great that expresses our individual styles and tastes, which we can share with the community and hopefully contribute something positive to the growing craft beer industry.
John: In addition to what Aaron said, we also look at this venture as an opportunity to build a legacy to pass down to our children. We have to be successful, not only for our own sake but for the sake of our families. We want to show our children what is possible if you are willing to work hard and persevere through difficulties.
WHY WE NEED YOUR HELP:
Our initial business model is based on what’s commonly known as ‘bootstrapping’. We are starting small, without relying on bank loans. We’re spending our time and individual efforts in ways that conserve our cash. In this way, we hope to grow the business organically. The next phase will be a larger system where we can begin to distribute locally, but before we can get there, we need to be able to open the doors in Phase 1. This is where we need your help! No matter how well a project is planned, unexpected expenses start to add up fast. We are asking for your help in funding the build-out of our taproom. Thank you for being an important part of our dream!
Risks and challenges
There are many risks and challenges to opening a brewery. The challenges range from the large amount of capital to start a brewery to the many steps along the way where we may experience delays. We will make every effort to keep you informed of our status throughout this process. If we anticipate or experience a delay, we will notify and update you.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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