Friday, 12 March 2010

Moving

Well that was an interesting week. Last Saturday we exchanged contracts to sell the Pub but had no place to live. We had already moved the brewery out of the pub and it was in bits in the new location. I really wanted to get some beer brewed to catch the chance of selling some for the Easter trade in the Lakes. Despite not having a home to go to we still needed to get our various extensive possessions moved out somehow before the 19th, which is a week today as it happens.

By Saturday we had an offer on a house accepted, it's great being a cash buyer. All week I've been moving stuff from here down to our spacious 2400 sq ft industrial unit. Each trip I'd spend a couple of hours doing some plumbing or wiring. Dumping beds and boxes until a scarily small amount of the floor was showing.

video

I've been critical of breweries moving and retaining the geographical name despite dispensing with any connection to the original location. For this reason I wanted to retain some geographical link to Hardknott. The simplest way to do this is to continue to use the same water for brewing as I used here. An intermediate bulk container, or IBC mounted on my trailer was the answer. My big Nissan 4x4 might well be bigger than I need most of the time, but for shifting a tonne of water it's great. Today I brewed Woolpacker with Hardknott water, hopefully the new owners will be happy to buy it off me and allow me to continue to extract from, what is soon to become, their private water source.

This is all fine and dandy, but to be able to brew sufficient beer to make a living from I need a brewery slightly larger than the two-and-a-bit barrel plant I have now. It takes around 500 litres of water to make the 9 firkins of beer. I'd really have to aim for about 50 firkins of beer a week to make a reasonable living. I'd need to cart at least 3000 litres of water a week to make that amount of beer. 3 tonnes of water. I'm not sure that I'd find enough people who wanted to buy the 3600 pints of beer a week who were bothered about the provenance of Hardknott beer. In fact, who really is going to care enough to pay the extra, never mind the fuel usage and impact on the environment.

For these reasons we've been thinking that all in all it might be better to leave the Hardknott name behind. Sure, some of you have come to know that this is the name of my brewery, but the larger market that I need to develop probably doesn't care. The only problem is, we can't seem to find anything that fits the bill. I've been bouncing ideas off Jeff Pickthall and so far nothing has jumped out.

I like single word names. Conjoined made up words are fine. We certainly want to avoid anything that suggests traditional or olde-worlde. I don't want to tie myself down to geography and besides, geographically named beers appear to get themselves constrained to local distribution.

What I do want is a name for my brewery that suggests innovation, because innovative we certainly intend to be. We also want a name that will give a prospective purchaser the idea that the product is crafted with care and passion, because I can promise that my beers will always have that.

Has the above brought any inspiration to my reader? Have you got the very name right there and are just bursting to let me know?

Well, go on then, tell me, comment away.

24 comments:

Mark said...

I think it's hard to make a name immediately reflect a brand identity, that comes later through your marketing and your branding.

I like Hardknott and to many there is no geographical link (and the link which exists is through you anyway). You could go with Bailey's but I think someone's taken that... HopPack, HardHop, Knott Brewing... Tough question!

Mitchel Adams said...

A little thesaurus work and Vanguard Brewery might fit the bill?? http://thesaurus.com/browse/vanguard

Although I actually agree with Mark, for most people the geographical link is not so important... Hardknott & @woolpackdave are linked to you, not the pub & the location (although @vanguarddave does have a nice ring to it!)

Tandleman said...

How about Creative Brewing? Or Forward Brewing? Maybe Cutting Edge Brewing, or Inspiring Brewing? Leading Brewing, Superior or Stellar (OK not the last.

Distinctive Brewing has a good ring to it.

You could substitute Brewery, Beer Company or Beers for any of the above.

It'd widen if it if you'd consider two words.

Any more and I'm going to have to invoice you1 (-;

Velky Al said...

On the water issue, if the new owners of the Woolpack do want to keep your beer on as a house ale, then I would suggest keeping the Hardknott water purely for that brew, otherwise, use what you have to hand and change the names of the beers.

As to the brewery name, a couple of suggestions:

Nova Brewery
RedStar Brewery (I think you could get some awesome marketing materials with that!)

Tandleman said...

Don't see Dave as Red Star type really, but yes you could have great marketing until sued by Heineken.

StringersBeer said...

You could try "Bailey's"... Oh no, hang on...

Velky Al said...

Tandleman,

I was thinking along the lines of socialist realist art, lots of strong straight lines and flags and things like that - but yes, the capitalist dogs at Heineken might object!

Ed said...

I think it would be good to keep a 'knott' connection. Perhaps you could find some inspiration in White Ghyll: http://www.ukclimbing.com/logbook/crag.php?id=341

Why Knott? Gordian Knott? Granny Knott would probably be going too far though.

RedNev said...

If not Red Star, why not Red Flag?

We'll keep the Red Flag brewing here.

ZakAvery said...

Ockham's

Kristy said...

I'd stick with Hardknott - I agree with Mark that that the identity comes through the marketing and branding and you have a tale to tell already with the name, without the water, about the journey you've been on to get to this place (excuse the use of "journey" sometimes I can't help but slip into marketing bollocks).

It might not be too widely known, yet, but it is yours and I'd stay with it

Brewers Union Local 180 said...

Brewers Union Local 360

MicMac said...

Barley Knott Brewing (i.e. almost has your surname + keeps the Knott bit).

Barley Twist Brewing (ditto the near-surname & has the 'twist' of innovation)

Full Pack Brewing (i.e. "a few cards short of . . ." ;~)

Certainly moving from their oroginal location but keeping the name hasn't done your neighbours in Staveley too much harm! (knocking out about 400 firks a week)

Bob said...

BlackSun Brewing

Washy said...

I like Hardknott. I like the fact that water from the lower slopes of Scafell is used to make the beer.

Barm said...

Woolly Brewery. You can have all sorts of hilarious beer names implying bestiality.

Tyson said...

Hmmm. You want a name that suggests creativity, cutting edge and, perhaps, even controversy. And yet one that can easily be recognised as your own. I can see only one possible answer...BrewDave!

Cooking Lager said...

How about "innovatio" or "innovationis", latin for innovation.

Though the name of your brew shed is the least of your worries, pal. You want to get ink on paper for some supply contracts rather than hope the new landlord will buy your beer.

GraemeR said...

How about Atomic?

Dave A said...

Dave you are welcome to use my monkier "Zippy" hahaha

Ok....you probably are not interested, but it's still a valid offer.

DJ said...

Knuttjob

DJ said...

Brewzle

Crown Brewer Stu said...

Hardknott !!!!!!!!!!!!

Ale Talk said...

befuggled

progressive