The new Tasting Room, Barrel room and Brewery: Part One: Have a Think About it!

The new Tasting Room, Barrel room and Brewery: Part One: Have a Think About it!

There was a fellow across the road nicknamed “Fig Jam” who ran something akin to a Victorian Curiosity shop. More infamous in reputation for his pro-car stance in a historic street long overdue for pedestrianisation, he eventually threw in the towel with the Victorian Precinct and shifted to his own shop a few streets away.

Meanwhile in the original Tinger {Tasting room}, it became customary for the hot water to fail at least once per service, which would involve leaving the bar and going out, often in the dark, through mountains of rubbish and rickety stairs, smothered in a mixture of sugar and coal dust, to turn the gas califont back on. Occasionally also the sump would fail and discharge down the ramp in front of our front door. This once led to the humorous observation by a customer to pause and say, “Wow, it not only looks like you’re in Brussels, but it even smells like it too!”

Well, we are naturally all about authenticity, but when the large classical limestone warehouse across the street came up for rent we raised an eyebrow. It came at a time when Craftwork had been going for six and a half years. It is oft’ said that it takes seven years to prove a business.

We had three clear options in front of us; option 1: Stop. Lee-Ann would probably have to retrain and leave our small town for a real job in the city. Michael would have retreated his Bookbindery to his front room and maintained his supplementary income from The Bookbinder’s Retreat, listed on accommodation websites, homebrewed, and tended his garden. Idyllic as that sounded, we would always have wondered if we didn’t stop before seven years - just what may have happened?

Option 2: Stay - at dirty old Sugar Daddy’s and never make a profit due to exorbitant rent as well as the inability to expand or brew onsite.

Option 3: Move and Expand. Buy a larger brew kit and have a larger Tasting room and house the bindery under one roof… Isn’t that the normal path that brewers follow?

Michael is very much the introverted pessimist of the two brewers, so Lee-Ann insisted that he made the decision…

That he is typing this blog now shows you that Pride before the Fall beckoned his decision and option 3 was instigated. {We should have listened to the other famous non-listener - Richard Emerson, who said right at the beginning, “Don’t go commercial!”}.

Back to blog