We started Steamer Basin with the idea of being a neighbourhood brewer. With a 50L brewkit, we imagined we could ‘make and sell’ enough beer to get by.
We were wrong.
That’s partly because New Zealand doesn’t give tax breaks to small brewers — unlike Australia, Canada, UK and US — but mostly because of all the non-brewing costs of getting it going.
Even selling beer directly, you simply can’t make enough to justify the time and effort it takes to keep a ‘nano’ brewery running. So in planning our expansion, we spent a lot of time asking “How big?”
In the end we’ve gone as big as our budget and premise allow.
We’re getting a 1500L system that can make 7500L at capacity. We feel it’s the best size for a small brewery like ours, making seasonal beer using local ingredients.
It’s big enough we’ll now be able to say “Yes!” when people ask if:
• they can sell our beer in their bar or restaurant
• we have a taproom at our brewery
We’re really excited about the taproom, for we saw in Oregon how it provides a true brewery experience. You sit in the middle of the working brewery and sample beer fresh from the tap.
We’re looking forward to opening our doors in the coming months.
Paul & Karen