Friday, April 30, 2010

brews, buildings, and a guy named borsodi

It doesn't take a whole lot to flatter the ol' wigshop crew. A kind word or a comment on a post will typically sooth our egos for a time, but a true behind the scenes tour with unfettered access to a new development makes us swoon, throw in some party favors and we're like play-dough in your hands... sort of... anyways.

Em, B, MG, Myself, and Wild Bill all took up Johnathan Borsodi on his very kind offer to show us around his new digs last Tuesday. Many of you have already heard about this, he is relaunching the old New Knoxville Brewery, under the name Marble City Brewing Company. First, let me give him props for picking a great name, More stuff in this town needs to be tied to its industrial heritage like the marble quarries etc.

(A man in his element)

I'll try to limit the info to the highlights, we were there for nearly two hours and could have stayed longer,there was just that much to talk about. Johnathan is a lawyer by trade (though his minor in German History probably inspired his beer obsession, see I told you there was too much information to go through everything) and as a migrant to Knox from Michigan, follows a long line of people who come to this town fall in love and never want to leave. Through relationships, he found out about the old New Knox Brewery and all of its goodies left behind, got together a vision, took a leap, and is now plunging headlong into the world of the Micro Brew.

(Where the magic happens)

Quick bullet points about the facility:

- 25 barrel capacity for beer (translation: lots of beer making capacity)
- 100 bottle a minute bottler (that's on par with Fat Tire)
- cooler capacity to store 40 barrels (they can make and store lots of beer)
- $30,000+ worth of old packaging, supplies, and pallets full of made
but never delivered beer by New Knox.
- A location close to the action, but far enough away to be affordable.

Without going into too much detail, Johnathan is partnering with his cousin (family businesses are always nice) and together they have exactly 0 beer-making experience. To compensate they have hired a brewmaster, smart move on their part, who we will all know more about very soon. She has had 10+ years as a brewer as far as I understand and will be one of only a handful female head brewers in this country, bonus for Knoxville on the uniqueness scale.

(Ahh yes, New Knox. the best "Mirco" Brew in town.)

Their plan is to produce a organic (in as much as it matters), Earth friendly, local product for distribution in the tri-county area of Knox, Sevier, and Blount. As self-distributors they will be peddling their wares all over the area to all the bars, restaurants, golf courses, and Methodist churches that will carry their product. This also means that they won't be hindered by anything but their own product as far as sales go. If they produce a liked and drinkable beer then they will succeed, if not they will fail. I like the model.

(Anyone need 200 cases of 3 year old, undrinkable beer)

I'm always excited to see people run with an idea and Knoxville is a great place to try out new things. It'll take lots of work, some luck, a great product, and a cheer-leading squad, but Knoxville is ready for another brewery. The more good local beer we have the better. I'm excited to see how Johnathan's venture plays out over then next few months and am even more excited to taste the fruits of his labor. God Speed, Marble City Brewing Company, the Wigshop is anxiously awaiting that first batch.

Editor's note from the MG: The guys at Marble City don't have a clear date for when the beer will be available, but they can assure you they are working to get it available as quickly as possible. As the head brewmaster was just recently hired, it will take time for her to develop the offerings and to get it into the production stages (ie not weeks or years but a matter of months).


Chris Eaker said...

So how soon before we get to partake? Good luck to them.

Anonymous said...

Where is the brewery and will we be able to drink there?

The Pol said...

It's over on E. Depot, just east of Hall of fame next to fireproof storage, the barrel district as it's known.

Time frame on production is still hazy, nothing firm yet as far they told us, this fall sometime since the gov't wants all the t's crossed and lower case j's dotted before making anything.

Anonymous said...

Maybe the Pol's family would all work in the family business if it was beer not buses? Im just saying... Take your sister to this brewery for the annual football excursion to K-town? Ill wear jeggings. Nice piece brother - your writing is entertaining, informative and not to wordy. Want a gig with BHG?

Michael said...

Holy crap, that is awesome news!

Anonymous said...

I'm looking forward to this and wish them well!

david said...

knoxville's only "mircobrewery" would misspell its own epithet.

this should be great.

Mickey said...

Set aside a six-pack for me, Knoxville.

Unknown said...

E. Depot? I thought I saw it in Bearden. Anyone know what I'm thinking of?

ck said...

There was a somebody proposing to put in a micro brewery near Ashe's in Bearden. I don't think it's the same guy, but I'm not sure.

The Modern Gal said...

Actually, that wasn't a microbrewery, that was just a specialty beer store, and I think it may be open or close to open?

Anonymous said...

Here's the beer market in Bearden ...

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