Friday, October 31, 2008


Happy Halloween from the Half Acre. We’ve reached frenzy over here at the new brewery. Hurdles have been crossed, but the race is still in its infancy.

Lizz Kannenberg wrote a story on Half Acre for the Medill news service that ran earlier in the week. She created a video to go along with it. It’s an interesting piece that I think you’d enjoy. Check it out here.

Well, today is Halloween, potentially the scariest day of the year. In reality it’s more fun than scary, but the day is certainly rooted in the dark. I can remember all of the lore in my small town growing up. The rumors of people bleeding chickens in graveyards, local cults, murders or whatever -- all of us getting each other worked up.

What I remember more vividly about this time of year as a kid was Mischief Night, the night before Halloween when youngsters declared war on adults. Explosives, eggs, toilet paper and other odds and ends were weapons used to create a ruckus. What fun we had, and rarely anyone got hurt.

These days Halloween makes for a great time to dress up, act inappropriately and have as much fun as possible – what a great holiday. So, make sure and have treats for kids if you live in a place with potential for little knuckles to wrap on your door. Otherwise, get in the spirit in any way you can.


Half Acre beer Co
Chicago, IL

Monday, October 27, 2008

Water Towers

Our first space in the Industrial Corridor of Near West Chicago sat below an abandoned water tower. Sitting in our space it loomed over us at all times. So, when designing our first label it was only right to incorporate it as our mascot of sorts. Chicago is home to many great water towers -- our Buddy Ian Issitt made this for us. He did a great job and we appreciate it.

(Our old water tower is featured mid-way through the film)


Thursday, October 23, 2008


The annual Festival of Barrel Aged Beers is rapidly approaching (Saturday November 8th).  I'd encourage you guys to grab a ticket and come on out.  Barrel aging beers is a unique way to handle beer.  Both the wood and prior use of the barrel can create flavors unattainable through other methods.  

Chicago is an important town in the history of barrel aging beer, and this years FOBAB will host more than 100 beers from some of the country's best brewers.  The Illinois Craft Brewers Guild, which Half Acre Beer Co is part, host the event and put on a good time.  

You can read about it and buy tickets here.

See you there for some deep dark beers.

Half Acre Beer Co
Chicago, IL

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Beer Taxi

We donated a keg to an event called “Brews Not Bombs.” It took place while we were in Colorado so we missed it, but apparently it was a huge success.

Anyway, Josh, the guy I worked with for the event brought the keg back to me using his spectacular bike taxi. He makes his living this way, and designed his ride himself. I’ve never seen him around town, but I think it’s a great way to get around and something more folks should think about.

It's Happening

We managed to get it all apart thanks to a bunch of good people who broke their ass over the course of a week. We had a lot of fun, worked hard and got it all done on schedule. Many thanks to Dave and George, Matt and the rest of the guys from Ska, the truckers and anyone else who had a hand in getting it all here. We also appreciate the folks from Jewel who let us stage our flat-beds in their parking lot.

(Take a look at that purple Peterbilt that cruised across the country with our tanks.  I wished I could have seen it mid-route gettin' it done)

So, it’s here. We have a disassembled brewery in our brewery to be. It’s kind of a mess and makes any fiber of OCD that I may have go absolutely haywire, but all this has a process and it can’t be forced – even though we’d like to work 20 hours a day until it shined and could churn out delicious beer.

Working in a construction site is a little weird, but being part of that change is exciting. The biggest thing is juggling running our business while launching this new phase to our business. A lot of the time we’re filthy from head to toe, so it’s good we’re in the beer industry and can generally conduct all aspects of business while covered in dirt. That’s part of the reason it’s great to do what we do.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Moving Mountains

Half Acre Beer Co is on the move. We officially moved our belongings to our new home 4257 N. Lincoln Ave. We only had time to cram everything in a corner because we flew out to Denver to decommission all the brewing equipment that we’ll be trucking back to Chicago.

(I’ll include a couple photos of the new space in its disheveled mess)

Both Matt and I used to live in Colorado. It’s a great state that has a lot going for it. We flew into Denver on Monday morning and immediately rented a car and drove to Durango in the Southwestern part of the state. Fortunately it was timed perfectly with the changing of the Aspens. Each stand was more attractive than the next. I was continually reminded of all those Michigan radio spots that Tim Allen narrates about nature’s playground, etc. Those commercials kind of drive me crazy, but also make me want to go anywhere and drive down country roads with covered bridges, see the trees explode with color and get lost. This scratched that itch completely.

I could go on and on about the nature found in Colorado, but time is tight for the amount of work that needs to be done before all four of the tractor-trailers are loaded and ready to drive for Chicago.

I’m going to let the pictures do most of the talking here, but lets just say that the days have been long and the task is daunting. There is a huge amount of equipment that needs to be broken down and packed accordingly. This has been a great way to familiarize ourselves with the details of everything we bought. I’ll feel very connected to all this stuff after this trip, and the fact that it’s coming from a great bunch of guys (Ska Brewing Co) that have been incredibly helpful, we also feel very good that it all comes from our once home state of Colorado.

Time to work.