Happy New Year – Thoughts on 2012
Happy New Year craft beer lovers! The bottling line is running with the last batch of 2012 Atlas IPA being born as we speak. This beer will likely ship Wednesday, January 2nd, to re-stock package stores, restaurants and pubs from the revelry of the holidays. Rain is softly pelting the roof, Avett Brothers playing in the brewhouse, and the white noise of the bottling line all present the perfect few moments for reflection on a year of milestones.
In January we added a new employee to the production team at Marshall Brewing, brewer Garrick “The Meat Clever” Ritzky. Garrick has certainly helped to lighten the already heavy load placed on our brewing/packaging employees and served as a good comrade as well as the butt of many a good joke. February brought an expansion of equipment as a new 60 BBL Unitank arrived from JV Northwest. Fermentor #8 was promptly installed to help us prepare for the ever growing demand placed on the brewery by the growth of our seasonal beers.
Spring brings new markets to Marshall as we receive licensing to begin selling beer in Arkansas and Missouri. Joplin and Springfield come on line first. Seeing our product in these markets on shelves is a bit like seeing a child take their first steps. Our hearts are filled with pride. Though we have been operating for more than four years, and moved out of state first to Kansas last year, it still is exhilarating to see Marshall Brewing in new places. Arkansas is next with beer shipping to Little Rock in June. The growth and support from our friends in Arkansas has been overwhelming. We knew these new markets were thirsty for craft beer, but had no way to guess to what degree. Cheers to Arkansas and Missouri and the many new friends and loyal craft beer drinkers we have met along the way. You inspire us!
Oklahoma is home to a burgeoning craft beer culture. Fall brought the introduction of new members of the craft beer community in Anthem Brewing, Black Mesa Brewing, and Prairie Artisan Ales. With the growth in the Oklahoma beer community comes the opportunity to further advocate and educate for craft beer. With this in mind the Oklahoma Brewers Guild began organizing in December with eyes towards a Spring 2013 craft beer festival.
2012 was filled with new friends, growth, and a broadened foundation for Marshall Brewing. As we move into 2013 we prepare to celebrate a major milestone, our 5th Anniversary. Though the previous four years have passed rather quickly, we appreciate the many hours of sweat and sheer hard work endured by our team towards making our craft beer dreams come true. Further we celebrate you, the craft beer drinkers. Your enthusiasm and passion are a pure representation of what makes America a country where dreams can come true. In taste we trust!
Cheers to the future,