Help Siebel/Doemens trained Master Brewer, Mike Brenner, start a brewery & return the title of Beer Capital of the World to Milwaukee. Read more
This project was successfully funded on June 17, 2012.
About this project
What Is The Brenner Brewing Company?
The Brenner Brewing Company is a brewery-in-planning in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. It all started on a sunny spring morning four years ago while homebrewing a batch of beer in front of my art gallery, Hotcakes. I realized that for 8 years people had been coming to my arts events for the beer in the keg more than the art on the walls. Then it hit me. I needed to flip the whole process. Instead of luring people into my art gallery with free beer and then trying to convince them to buy art, I should sell the beer and use my brewery as a vehicle to support and promote local artists and musicians.
Long story short... I closed my gallery, had the nonprofit I co-founded (MARN) hire a new Executive Director, enrolled in an MBA program at UW-Milwaukee, and starting taking brewing classes at the Siebel Institute of Technology in Chicago and the Doemens Akademie in Munich.
Fast Forward to present day... I'm an MBA and a diplomaed Master Brewer, I've written an incredible business plan, and I'm meeting with potential investors a couple times a week. I still have a lot of money to raise before I can open the brewery and start selling beer, but until I find all the right investors necessary to turn this dream into a reality, I am brewing as much beer as possible and donating it to friends who have art galleries and other small local businesses to use for their events. This summer, I would like to promote the brewery at even more events around Milwaukee, Madison, Chicago, and Minneapolis, but without your financial help, my ability to do events will be very limited. Right now nothing is more important than getting my beer in the hands of potential investors, so please consider supporting my dream of opening a community-centered, art-focused brewery in Milwaukee.
More Information About Brenner Brewing
Brenner Brewing Co. Website
Brenner Brewing on Facebook
Brenner Brewing on Twitter
Brenner Brewing Co. on UnTappd
What You Get For Your Money
I've set up a bunch of different rewards for you to choose from. Most are high-quality swag with the Brenner Brewing Company logo on them. I also created some really cool experience-based rewards. If you're looking to get into homebrewing or upgrade to all-grain and want a diplomaed Master Brewer to walk you through the process, take a look at the $175 and $350 pledge levels. All the rewards make great gifts for your beer geek friends and loved ones. In particular, the $70 pledge gets you and a friend a package of merch mailed to each of your houses. So take a look around and let me know if you have any questions. I REALLY appreciate your support in helping me make my dream of opening a community-centered, art-focused brewery in my hometown come true!
What Your Money Will Be Used For
A lot of you found out about the Brenner Brewing Company by drinking my beer for free at an art gallery or nonprofit fundraiser. I will be using all your generous donations on Kickstarter to buy supplies and upgrade my beer dispensing system to one like the pros use at beer festivals. There's nothing more important right now then getting my beers in the hands of potential investors, and having more reliable, higher-quality equipment will make it possible for me to start promoting the brewery at beer festivals and do a lot more free beer tastings for nonprofit fundraisers and at art galleries. Any money I get above the $10,000 will be put directly toward getting my brewery up and running. Lawyers, accountants, brewing equipment, and supplies are super expensive!
How Does This Work?
It's pretty straight forward. 1) You click on the reward level indicating how much you would like to donate. 2) Click on the "Continue to Next Step" button at the bottom of the page. 3) Click on "Continue to Amazon" 4) If you have an Amazon account, log in. If not, enter your email address and select "I am a new customer." then click "Sign in using our secure server." 5) Follow Amazon's Instructions. 6) If I hit my target of $10,000, your credit card will be charged on June 17. If I only make it to $9,999, you aren't charged and I get nothing. Make sure you have money available on the card on the 17th. 7) I mail you your Brenner Brewing swag.
Frequently Asked Questions
You're A Brewer. Why Aren't You Giving Away Beer As A Reward?Giving away alcoholic beverages is strictly prohibited by Kickstarter. Sorry. I do a lot of free beer tastings that are open to the public though, and you're welcome to come by and try my beer there.
How Do I Tell You What Size T-Shirt I Need?
If I'm at or above my goal of $10,000 on Sunday Jun 17, 8:00pm CDT, Kickstarter will charge your credit card, and at that point you'll be asked what size T-Shirt you want and what address you want your stuff sent to.
If I Come To One Of Your Tasting Events Can I Just Buy The Swag From You There?
I won't be purchasing any of the stickers, pint glasses, bottle openers, or t-shirts, until the Kickstarter campaign is over.
If This Is A Fundraiser, Why Are You Giving Away So Much Stuff?
I've gotten a bunch of feedback that people would rather see the money go to getting the brewery open than paying for pint glasses and bottle openers. Donation and reward levels were all based on what I thought was the best way to get as many people as possible involved in this project. Kickstarter lets each donor choose how much you want to give and what reward you want. You can choose not to get a reward and just donate, or you can give more than I'm asking for a reward. For instance, you can donate $100 and choose to only receive the $20 level reward. I've personally backed over 70 Kickstarter campaigns, and while it's fun to help people make cool projects happen, it's also nice to get a little something to remind you about the project. I'll let you decide.
Why Won't You Ship Me A Pint Glass?
I can't imagine a pint glass would survive the trip, and I don't want to disappoint people when a box full of glass arrives on their doorstep. If you're dead set on having one shipped to you, add $5 to your donation, and I'll put it in a plastic bag, bubble wrap the heck out of it, and write fragile on the box. No complaints though if it still shows up broken.
What's It Like To Brew On That Brew Sculpture?
I made a little stop motion YouTube video of my brewing process.
What Do You Think About Will Ferrell Doing Old Milwaukee Ads?
I think it would have been a lot cooler if he would have done a dozen commercials for small local breweries instead of for a beer brand owned by a marketing company run as a hobby by the sons of a billionaire in LA. So... I made my own spoof commercial.
What Kind of Beers Will Brenner Brewing Company Produce?
Below is partial list of beers Brenner Brewing is planning to produce. All the beer names are still works in progress.
Star Belly Amber Hybrid was originally a California Common, but after a late addition of cascade hops, some darker roasted malts, higher temperatures in open fermentation tanks, and reduced yeast cell counts, we ended up creating this incredibly complex and easy drinking masterpiece.
Moon Baby India Pale Ale starts with a much maltier base and bitterness on the low-end for contemporary IPAs. A Spicy hop taste and floral hop aroma is balanced with subtle citrus notes. Wheat is added to give a bigger mouth feel and a frothy head. This beer is all about balance.
Bacon Bomb Rauchbier is a blend of German beechwood and Wisconsin cherrywood smoked malts. Noble German hops and fresh black pepper add a subtle bite. The yeast strain keeps the body light to balance the huge flavors and nose, making it perfect for food pairing without being overbearing.
My Flanders Red is oak aged for up to 18 months with Lactobacillus, producing a biting and crisp flavor. The sourness is complimented by delicate raspberry and plum flavors. A well made sour beer is a beautiful thing.
My Hopfen-Weizenbock is not your traditional German style weissbier. Made with pilsner malt and wheat roasted in Wisconsin. Subtle banana flavors come from the Weinstephan yeast, but four times the hops as usual make for a beer you won't find outside München.
Witchcraft Imperial Stout is made with locally roasted coffee, locally sourced buckwheat honey, molasses, and nine different malts. It is then oak aged in wooden barrels with vanilla beans for six months to mellow this 13% ABV monster into a smooth drinking delicacy.
Bohemian Prophet Pilsner is made with Czech malt and Saaz hops, just like in the old country. A subtle natural carbonation and spicy yeast character take you back to a time when every village had a brewery and lagers actually had flavor.
Glücklich Pils is brewed to make my Northern German ancestors proud. It's brewed with barley malted in Wisconsin and Noble German hops, but what separates this beer from all others is the small percentage of acidulated malt added to drop the pH of the beer giving it a refreshing bite. Perfect for summer beer garden drinking.
What's an Art-Centered Brewery?
As most of you know, I was one of the co-founders and the longtime Executive Director of the Milwaukee Artist Resource Network (MARN). I also owned and ran Hotcakes Gallery for almost five years. Even before that though, in the early 90's, I made my "living" playing over 200 shows a year in a Milwaukee-based cover band, John the Conqueroo. Obviously, supporting local artists and musicians has always been at the heart of everything I've done, and I don't want the brewery to be any different.
If you look at the image below, you can see a very small part of my plan to integrate music and art into what the brewey is. I not only want to show the world that Milwaukee still does make the best beer on earth, but also has an incredible community of hard working artists and musicians that deserve international attention. As each of Brenner Brewing's "12oz Ambassadors" gets into the hands of someone outside Milwaukee and eventually outside of Wisconsin, we'll show the rest of the world what we're up to here... Amazing Beer, Amazing Art, Amazing Music, Amazing People.
Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.
Pledge $1 or more
VOTE WITH YOUR WALLET! Donating even $1 tells investors Milwaukee is ready for another Brewery. Vote YES now! I'll put your name on the plaque in the brewery, so you can show your friends you helped start Brenner Brewing before anybody even knew it existed!Estimated delivery:
Pledge $5 or more
For contributing $5 toward helping Milwaukee regain it's title as Beer Capital of the World, you will receive two different Brenner Brewing Company stickers mailed to any US address. Your name will also appear on a commemorative plaque hung in the brewery so you can show all your friends what a thoughtful person you are.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $15 or more
Aww... You DO like me! Your reward for kicking in $15 is a beautiful 7" metal bottle opener adorned with the Brenner Brewing logo and the two stickers mailed anywhere in the US. Your name will also appear on the Plaque of Destiny.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $20 or more
LOCALS ONLY PINT PACK. Your name will be on the Plaque of Extraordinary Gentlemen (& Women), but you have to pick up your two stickers, bottle opener, and one of our gorgeous Brenner Brewing Company pint glasses at a local tasting event.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $35 or more
MERCH PACK! Receive a Brenner Brewing Company T-Shirt (in any size you want), the bottle opener, a couple stickers mailed to you anywhere in the US, your name on the plaque, and a pint glass when you come to a tasting event or visit the brewery.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $55 or more
HAPPY COUPLE. Two stickers, one bottle opener, and two t-shirts mailed to the same address anywhere in the US. You also get two pint glasses at a local tasting event or when you visit the brewery to show off your name on the plaque to all your friends.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $70 or more
ONE FOR YOU ONE FOR ME. I'll mail you and a friend each two stickers, a bottle opener, and a t-shirt anywhere in the US. Both your names will appear on the plaque. You can pick up two pint glasses at a tasting event or at the brewery. A great gift for you and a beer geek friend.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $100 or more
I WILL ALWAYS LOVE YOU PACKAGE. This package puts you on a special VIP mailing list so you'll be able to buy all special release Brenner Brewing Co. beers directly from the brewery before they go on sale to the general public. You'll also get the two stickers, the bottle opener, a t-shirt, a pint glass (at a tasting event), and your name on the plaque. As a special bonus, I would also be willing to sing my incredible karaoke version of "I Will Always Love You" at your wedding, but you have to pay all my travel expenses, feed me, and get me drunk.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $120 or more
2 backers All gone!
ASSISTANT BREWER FOR A DAY. Here's a last minute, late night deal to get this campaign to $20K. You'll get to come to the Brenner Brewing Company and help brew a batch of beer. I'll treat you like a VIP. I'll even buy you lunch. You also get all the privileges and rewards in the $20 Package. **Please note that Brenner Brewing won't be opening for at LEAST six months... maybe a year.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $175 or more
GET STARTED HOMEBREWING RIGHT PACKAGE. You get a diplomaed Master Brewer as your personal homebrewing instructor. You tell me what kind of beer you want to homebrew and I'll come up with a recipe for you. Then I'll meet you at the homebrew supply store and help you figure out what equipment and supplies you should buy to get started with your exciting new hobby. The following week, I'll come to your house and brew with you. I'll bring you a couple stickers, a bottle opener, a t-shirt, and a pint glass. Your name will appear on the plaque. You must live within 40 minutes drive of Milwaukee. Please keep in mind that you'll have to spend between $100-$200 on equipment & supplies. **(You can bring up to two friends, but please add $30/person if they also want all the merch. Thanks!)Estimated delivery:
Pledge $225 or more
ASSISTANT BREWER FOR A DAY. You'll get to come to the Brenner Brewing Company and help brew a batch of beer. I'll treat you like a VIP. I'll even buy you lunch. You also get all the privileges and rewards in the $100 Package.
**Please note that Brenner Brewing won't be opening for at LEAST six months... maybe a year.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $350 or more
HOMEBREWER PARTY PACKAGE. Great idea for a bachelor or birthday party. I'll come to your house and help you and all your friends brew. You'll be dazzled by my brewing knowledge, stories of my police altercations in Germany, and a slideshow featuring photos of every schnitzel I ever ate while in brewing school. I'm also willing to drink all your homebrew, and give you feedback and tips about how to change your brewing process to improve your beers. I'll bring two stickers, a bottle opener, and a pint glass for you and up to 10 of your friends. The guest of honor also gets a t-shirt and their name on the plaque. You must live within a two hour drive of Milwaukee. (That's just $32 each for a private homebrewing class with a diplomaed Master Brewer!)Estimated delivery:
Pledge $600 or more
0 backers Limited (8 left of 8)
MAKE YOUR OWN SOUR. The 8 lucky people who bid on this package, will get to come to the brewery and help brew a sour beer. We'll start will an Oud Bruin base, and after fermentation you'll get to come back and add whatever you like to the barrel that it's aged in. You want to dump in Door County cherries... Peaches... an Old Shoe... it's your call. After it's oak aged, we'll name it after you and sell it in our tasting room. You'll also get to take the empty barrel home to turn into a coffee table or whatever. You also get everything in the $35 Merch Pack.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $700 or more
0 backers Limited (4 left of 4)
BREW A 13% IMPERIAL STOUT. The 4 lucky people who bid on this package, will get to come to the brewery and help brew our 13% ABV beer that's made with locally roasted coffee, local buckwheat honey, and molasses. After fermentation you'll get to come back and add whatever you like to the barrel that it's aged in. You want to dump in Vanilla Beans... Cocoa Nibs... fresh Raspberries... the Tears from a Lost Kitten... it's your call. After it's oak aged, we'll name it after you and sell it in our tasting room. You'll also get to take the empty barrel home to turn into a garden planter or whatever. You also get everything in the $35 Merch Pack.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $2,500 or more
1 backer All gone!
BREW LIKE A BREWMASTER PACKAGE. One person will get to Buy My All-Grain Brewing System & Brew at My Brewery with All Their Friends. I have an amazing 10 Gallon "Tippy Dump" Brew Sculpture from MoreBeer.com stocked with a bunch of custom upgrades. You seriously can't find an all-grain brewing system that is more efficient and easier to use than this one. It would cost $4K to buy it new and have it delivered to your door, and the company has a four month waiting list to get it. I'll sandblast and repaint the frame for you so it's as good as new, deliver it to your house, and brew a batch with you and your friends so you know just how to use it. I'll bring two stickers, a bottle opener, and a pint glass for you and ten of your friends. AND I'll also let you and ten of your friends help me brew a batch of beer at the brewery when I get it up and running. This package is only available for people within 3 hours drive of Milwaukee.Estimated delivery:
- (59 days)