As many of you already know, we have moved our brewery / retail presence into our brand new facility located across the street from the old retail shop. Please see this map for reference:
As many of you already know, we have moved our brewery / retail presence into our brand new facility located across the street from the old retail shop. Please see this map for reference:
I wanted to post a quick note regarding growler fills in the future at Tree House....
It was reported by the news that we would be discontinuing growler fills when our packaging systems were up and running. This was a simple oversight (it's OK, it happens!) but unfortunately for us it was published and we received a *lot* of e-mails.
So to reiterate, growlers fills are *not* going away, ever! They've been core to our brewery since we brewed batches ten gallons at a time and will be as long as we take up space in the universe.
The reason I stated it is 'unlikely' we will fill 'core' beers [in growlers] is because we anticipate having twelve lines of growler-only beers at all times. If a line runs dry and we have a few kegs of core beers to fill it with, we will fill it…! But it's our plan, right now, to dedicate the retail shop lines to more small batch projects.
Double Double Shot, Very Green, King Julius, Julius dry hopped with 'x', Green dry hopped with 'y', fruited berliner weisse, a bounty of other beers yet to be brewed, etc. etc. etc. . . all available in growler form only!
I hope this helps to clarify.
But seriously, Green in cans.
There was a time (what seems like twenty years ago) when I would write thoughts, share imagery, and quote inspiration for Tree House projects on a near daily basis. I miss those days because Tree House is constantly on my mind (of course it is -we don't leave!) and I have a lot to share about it. At any rate, time is at a dear premium so I’ll spare you the nostalgia and jump right to the meat of why I am writing today.
If you’re reading this you likely know that we've built a new facility with the intent to make the Tree House experience as great as it possibly can be. “How will the new facility improve the experience?” “What else can you tell us about the new project?” A stream of consciousness to follow….
We will have a lot more beer. New equipment purchases will allow us to make at least ten times as much beer in 2015 as we did in 2014. We have a 30 bbl brewhouse landing within a few weeks and a mixture of 30 & 60 BBL tanks are already in place. “How many barrels?” Honestly, I don’t know…. but, a lot more.
We will CAN some of our beer. Before settling on a canning line, we found none of the other options we investigated were a good long term solution for preserving and presenting the vibrant, fresh hop experience we work so hard to create. More importantly, we didn't have room to package. This has meant on-demand Co2 purged growler fills were the way to go in the meantime. Given the demand for our beer, this has meant long waits in the retail shop. (Though I must give props to the hardest working retail crew in the world. They do absolutely superhuman work). Regardless, we know it is frustrating. We have, and will continue to appreciate your saintly patience as we work toward the ideal model…. It is soon to improve. We want our beer to be easy to get. And it will be!
Which beers will we can? To start… Julius. We will be making a LOT of Julius in 2015 and beyond. To put how much into perspective, we expect to make as much Julius in three weeks - once we get rolling - as we’ve made in the entire three years Tree House has existed. Also making appearances, with near certainty, will be each Eureka variant (including a new Mosaic version), Green, Haze, and That’s What She Said. They will all be available in 16 oz. four packs at the retail shop. But seriously, cans of Green to take with you on the trail or in the boat? HELL YES!
We will bottle some of our beer. Hopefully by late spring / early summer we will receive our bottling line. This means bottles of Double Shot, Double Shot variants, Good Morning, and Good Morning variants, among other things from the barrel program we will finally have room for. I am so excited!!
We will continue growler fills. It’s unlikely we will fill growlers of the beers to be packaged. Instead, we will offer growler fills of 5 BBL batches that we are working on throughout the year. Retail shop exclusives, if you will, brewed on the original Premier Stainless brew house. One-offs galore.
We will (god willing) have beer on draft around central Mass (and beyond?)!
We will have a mixed fermentation barrel program. Brendan and I constantly riff about different beers we want to make without the space, capacity, or means to make them. That is about to change. What kind of beers am I referring to? You saw a sliver of it with Lucid. Imagine Lucid with a bit more acidity, less residual sugar, a bit more funk, and tannic barrel attributes. We have a house spontaneous culture Brendan has been blending and working with for over a year now. It will start to see the light of day in 2015, among many other things like fruited wild beers with native fruit. I could talk about it for hours but carry on I must... Can you tell we're excited?!
Surprises! I can't say anything else or it wouldn't be a surprise... o_O
When? Target dates create undue stress. We don't want to disappoint you! We are all working very hard and sacrificing dearly to get to where we want to be. The answer is most definitely very soon! The building is 95% done and equipment is nearly all in place.
Tell us about the building! We built it from scratch on a 4 acre plot that was home to scrub brush and young tree growth as of May this year. It’s our building. The grounds are absolutely beautiful and true to the Tree House spirit. The koi pond will be back, in grand fashion, as will the Tree House!
Beer brewed by us, packaged by us on our equipment, in a facility we built from scratch! A personal dream come true!
A caveat about retail: While our new facility gives us 12 times as much room as we have ever had, we are not done yet. We plan - in the next 1-3 years - to build a gorgeous timber frame structure to permanently house the retail shop, in addition to a large climate controlled barrel room. In the meantime, please note that the retail space in the new building is temporary (though we think it will feel awfully familiar :).
In the meantime, before the new facility and equipment are online... we are working harder than we ever imagined we could work to have beer ready and available for retail hours. We can barely keep up. We are making as much great beer as quickly as possible given our current space and equipment. We thank you - again! - for your continued patience.
What else can you tell us about the future? Not much. It's unpredictable!
Phew. Hopefully this gives you a bit of an idea what to expect in the coming year from Tree House. We have worked very hard for over three years tweaking, refining, and iterating on our recipes and we are downright giddy to finally get to share them on a broader scale. We hope you are too!
Every time I pause to reflect on how far we've come and where we are, I look back at the founding principles of Tree House to make sure we haven't veered off course. I'm happy to report we are the same Tree House we were when we started: one that aims to make, and continue to make, the very best beer possible without compromise.
Take care, and thank you so much for letting us live out our dream! We'll raise a glass to a happy and healthy new year for you all!
coming soon - reflections on 2014 - one hell of a year. giving thanks to those who have made tree house what it is... the best customers, crew, and network anyone could ever ask for... thoughts on our beers, and their continued refinement...
Just a quick note on this past Saturday, February 1st. . . We had a great, relaxed day in celebration of a fresh and lovely batch of Snowtober. Thank you to everyone who continues to support us, and to our new friends here in Monson whose faces we are seeing quite often!
Looking ahead, we're already jazzed about next weekend. A new stout, which we've yet to name, will feature copious amounts of freshly roasted Guatemalan coffee with just the proper amount of sweetness to balance things out. A coffee lover's delight!
We also have a solid amount of delightful and simple pale hoppy beer in the tanks, which will be trickling out in the weeks ahead. Stay tuned.
This week and the next we'll be brewing special beers for the Extreme Beer Festival in Boston, along with a new Imperial Stout to be aged in Elmer T. Lee barrels. We expect this one to be released some time around the holidays. The Extreme Beer Festival beers will also be available in the retail shop in small quantities. . .
We hope you enjoy your refillable bottles over the next few days.
Until next time. . .!
Oh, hey blog, what’s happening? It’s been a while, hasn’t it? I have to apologize. . . we’ve all been a bit busy, and distracted carrying our brewery four and a half miles to the blustery expanse of East Hill road in Monson!
The last few months have been a whirlwind of activity here at Tree House, and I’ve been meaning to share something of a status update but wanted to make sure I had a chance to properly collect my thoughts. Luckily today, sitting quietly in an empty brewery listening to the burps of fermenting beer, I think I’ve reached that point.
One of our goals during the move was to stay open and not have to shut down for weeks on end. A lofty goal, indeed. We’re quite proud to say that after enduring many double digit hour days through holidays and the birth of a new member of the Tree House family (Tessa!), we achieved our goal. The monumental task of permitting a brewery and moving it without loss of service is a task that I - and everyone here at Tree House - hope we never have to endure again.
Setting challenges aside, the wheels are officially in motion to continue the agricultural legacy of Koran's Farm for future generations, and to preserve its beauty for both the community of Monson and travelers from afar.
Now that we’re settled in and comfortable in the relocated brew house, we’ve begun to produce beer that we think is better than ever - soft, elegant, and distinguished. We are laser focused on the present, but also looking ahead to the future with exciting bottling projects in the works including mixed fermentation efforts, wood aged beers, and collaborative beers with friends. Spring will also see the birth of an expansive growth program to include native hops and fruit trees!
Since opening our doors in Monson we have seen a greatly increased curiosity in our project, and we've been selling everything we produce in seven short hours every Saturday.
This has resulted in some understandable frustration. We had hoped to be open more often as our new location affords, but we have not been able to get our stockpile of beer to an appreciable enough level. In other words, we could open on Thursday & Friday, but we wouldn't have any beer. Another frustration has been a lack of variety on Saturday, also a function of low supply. We can't do much to change this in the very short term, but we can point you to treehousebrew.com/on-tap, which is consistently updated and accurate, providing a snapshot of what will be available during your trip. And when you're here you can tell Dean to stop drinking all the beer.
We've always focused on becoming objectively better brewers at Tree House, while not rushing to become bigger. With that focus comes challenges of supply. We have chosen to take a route for the next phase of our project that looks deep into the future of sustainability and community, rather than rushing to expand. Given this path, we'll ask for your continued patience as we try to get it right from the very beginning. We are keenly aware of the difficulties with our current system (long lines, limited hours), but we can sternly promise our operation will become increasingly efficient - via substantial capital investment - in the next year.
In the very near term, we have added a 10 BBL tank and will be above Brimfield levels of 'production' in 3-4 weeks. . . and with it we hope to resupply our draft accounts and open a few more days out of the week to alleviate wait times & lines. Green, Julius, Sap, and a new Coffee Beer all resting in the tanks waiting for their turn. . .
Our neighbors and the Town of Monson have been wonderful in welcoming us to the neighborhood. We are looking forward to a long and joyful relationship!
In closing, we sincerely appreciate all of your submitted thoughts, both good and bad. Really. We have embraced your informed perspective over the years as we consistently try to improve!
The very best is yet to come.
Ahh, October. The leaves are morphing into their trademark Autumn hue and we’ve been as busy as ever in the Tree House barn.
Our pale hoppy offerings are still churning about at their regular pace but we’ve begun to inject a bit of seasonal flair into our tanks. “Snowtober”, our Porter, was brewed last week and should be ready before Halloween. “Awesome Autumn Ale”, our Imperial Ale brewed with restrained Autumn Spice and aged in stainless on Madagascar Vanilla Beans should be ready around the same time.
Autumn and winter promise to have other surprises in store, but more on that later.
Oh, and we’re carving pumpkins! Damien has once again lent his talents to the face of an unsuspecting pumpkin and produced the Tree House logo in all her glory. He rules, but we want you to get in on the fun too!
On Saturday, October 26th, we invite you to share your pumpkin carving talents as part of the first annual Tree House pumpkin carving contest! The rules are simple:
Carve a pumpkin - either a skin carving like Damien did or a standard style carving.
No theme - Carve to your heart’s content. But be aware that if someone successfully carves Dean’s face into a pumpkin they will very likely win.
Bring it to Tree House on or before October 26th.
*But really, we’ll judge and the prizes will be as follows:
1st Place - $50 Tree House Gift Card
2nd Place - $25 Tree House Gift Card
3rd Place - $10 Tree House Gift Card
All others - I’ll be taking a group photo of all the entries to be shared on www.treehousebrew.com . Everyone's a winner.
Carve awesomely, foks.
We’ll be doing our part to raise awareness for this terrible disease through T-shirts and signs in the retail shop, but also by donating 5% of our total sales from Saturday, October 26th to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. If you’re interested in helping personally, please go here to make a donation. Every little bit counts. Thank you for listening.
Last evening we joined a celebration of Armsby Abbey's 5th Anniversary with seventy or so supporters and friends of both Tree House Brewing Company and the Abbey. To say we were blown away by Alec, Aric, Chef Damian and their first class knowledgeable staff would be a complete understatement.
We were humbled to be pouring our beers alongside their masterful creations. We could not have asked for a better first beer pairing evening. The pacing was excellent, the beers were pouring well, and everyone was in great spirits. It's a night we will fondly carry with us for the rest of our lives as we continue on the journey of Tree House Brewing Company.
Thank you. Thank you. Thank you!
Below is a small gallery of the evening's events. We had anticipated documenting the evening in more detail, but we were simply having too much fun. :)
It's been an insanely busy few months and through the madness we never had an opportunity to properly reflect upon and celebrate our one year anniversary!
Thus, you can imagine how excited we were when our good friends at Armsby Abbey had the idea to collaborate with us on our very first beer pairing dinner!
We have forged many great relationships with our customers over the past year, and we are truly looking forward to the opportunity to relax and share in the culinary delights of Chef Damian Evangelous with you. A few tickets still remain. If you are interested in attending, you can find more information HERE.
. . .
As we inch closer and closer to announcing the exciting future plans for Tree House, we've been reflecting on our roots and how far we've come. During these reflections we can't help but feel deeply grateful to those of you who have supported us (in more ways than one) along the way. Thank you so, so much.
We now interrupt your regularly scheduled programming to bring you this fan submitted photo from the Tree House grounds this past Saturday:
Try not to melt, I dare you!
This has been a week of great press coverage here at Tree House. We can't express how much we appreciate it when someone takes the time to articulate their thoughts about our beer or visiting the barn. It invigorates us! So, thank you!
Drink Insider offered the following:
"The thing about this beer is that it isn’t the biggest, it isn’t the hoppiest (though it is quite hoppy), it doesn’t have any crazy ingredients… What it does have, though, is complete precision when it comes to balance, flavor and aroma. The brewers at Tree House have adjusted all of the levels just right. It’s so fresh, so burstingly plump and delicious, so exquisitely hopped. I don’t know what else to say, this is just one hell of an IPA – perhaps one of the best I’ve ever had."
Please support our friends at Drink Insider and check it out!
Krysten Sikes, writing for the Appalachian Mountain Club, had this:
"Now for the brews. After our hike we drove across US Route 20, where Dearth Hill Road gives way to the winding St Claire Road. Near the top of the hill we arrived at the inconspicuous Tree House Brewing, nestled in the trees. A small group of home brewers, inspired by a successful beer tasting with friends, founded the brewery in 2011. Two of the owners and their friendly puppy greeted us as we stepped out of the car. They showed us around the brewery, and we admired the gleaming brew kettles and fermenters and marveled at their impressive bottle-filling station. Tree House's highly sought-after brews now rival some the best in the Northeast, with beer connoisseurs traveling long distances to visit the brewery."
We love the AMC and all their hard work, so it was humbling to get coverage on their website. So cool! You can read the whole thing here.
The Boston Globe included us in their list of 10 Most Notable New(ish) Breweries in New England:
"Tree House Brewing is a veritable Eden in tiny Brimfield, with views of the Pioneer Valley mountainside, a koi pond perfect for picnicking, and a fire pit where visitors lounge with growlers of Nate Lanier’s fantastic beers. “We work hard to make our little brewery a beautiful space to kill a few hours,” says Lanier. “It’s a peaceful, invigorating space.”"
We hope your growlers are pouring well! We'll see you Thursday with a new batch of "That's What She Said"!
Absolutely delicious. Happy Friday, all!