Rules for Starting a Nanobrewery

No plans to go pro? Read #6!

Crooked Run Brewing

Thinking of starting a nano?  It seems like every homebrewer’s dream.  It was my dream.  If you’ve ever thought about it, let me just be honest about a couple of things.  First, it is some of the hardest work you will do for the least amount of money.  Second, it can be really, really fun.  Keeping that in mind, here are ten rules I wrote for starting a nano.

1. Nanos are just like any other business.  To be successful, you need to make money.  Enough money to cover costs, pay yourself and pay off any loans you have to take in a reasonable amount of time.  If you are fine with not making any money and just want to have a go at it as a hobby business, you can ignore the rest of what I have written here if you want.

2. Nanos won’t work in every area…

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    • Possible? Maybe. Profittable? Maybe with right location. Midnight in Goochland is only true nanobrewery in RVA right now. Isley is only a step up at I believe 3 barrels; nano being typically 1.5 barrel production.

      • Interesting. I was just reading Kory’s write-up on the Beer Hound Brewery too. I was thinking more about the Ardent brew garage… could they have rearranged that more ‘formally’ to sell out of, rather than just to test recipes? I have a bar in my basement and a big shed with electricity, would Henrico let me sell beer out of either one? LOL… my wife would kill me. But at least I’d be home more!

      • In Ardent’s case, they were always looking to do full scale production brewery. The brew garage was a great way to invite investors to try their beers.

        Not sure of the laws in Henrico but don’t think that’d work; residential vs business zoning.

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