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Liveblogging Stone Brewing Co.’s Unveiling

May 18

Update 4:44P: I’ve cleaned up this post so it will read better. Formatting and punctuation only. There were tons of other media friends there, and did a great job of compiling everything into one post.

We are here at Liberty Station covering Stone’s media unveiling. I’ll attempt to liveblog news as they take place on my Android. Please excuse errors, editing will take place on the fly.

1030a: doors open, beer is served.

1047a: Cool photo slideshow that’s covering the early Stone days. Apparently Stone IPA is the longest in-production West Coast style IPA.

1052a: Mention of European expansion. Focus is on Belgium and Germany. No news on Stone’s Euro expansion will happen today.

1055a: Stone South Park mention. This location will open “in approximately 30 days” according to Greg Koch. There will be NO brewery whatsoever at the South Park location.

11a: Liberty Station mentioned. Details:  20,000 sq ft, 400 person, 40 taps, 3000 sq ft kitchen, 19000 sq ft landscaped garden. Steve says the planes flying overhead are perfect for pausing and sipping beer. There will be a merchandise store, growler fills. Local neighbor interrupts the meeting: “Wow I go to Stone in Escondido all the time.” Greg: “Now you don’t have to!” There will be stone events similar to the Escondido location. Also, Oakquinox and Sour fests or similar to be held.

-New Stone fest announced on 11/13/11 called Pour it Black. Will feature black and cascadian dark IPAS, porters, stouts.

-3 million initial investment. 130 jobs. Opening 1 year approximately.

1108a: Showing off renderings. This will look / be cool. Check our Twitter for a photo.

1115a: Question and answer. After a few attempts, Greg stopped trying to talk over the planes flying low overhead. Stone is working with the NTC foundation which owns most of Liberty station.

Question about investment. Stone is going to finance the project. Does not have all of the money, around 23 million total for the project. No mention of private investors.  Great question by our friends at The Full Pint.

1155a: We are on a bus heading to Stone Farms. Regrettably, there is no beer on the bus. I’m sitting behind councilmember Ed Gallo of Escondido and in front of Greg Koch.

1244p: We have arrived at Stone Farms. 18 acres in Valley Center. Dr. Bill mentions that there are going to be Stone sodas. Ludacrisly Low Impact Cola. Food is being served…

1256p: Dr. Bill reports that events and dinners will be held at Stone farms.

107p: Stone Farms are Biodynamic. Had to look up this one. Apparently Stone Farms are/will be beyond organic. Stone took over the property of the farms in March of 2011. “Can a small 18 acre farm operate in a sustainable fashion, both in business and environmentally?” Asks Greg, who then calls the farm an experiment. There will be mild development on the farms for event space and community events.

-Chickens are on the farm being raised to produce eggs on a small scale

-Eventually the farm will produce some of the veggies for the Bistro. Just how much is unknown. There are hops planted, but the area is inpractical for growing hops a large level. Not best environment for growing.

-The farm will be open for events in one year approximately.

129p: back on the bus heading to Stone.

147p: at Stone Bistro preparing for next round of presentations.

158p: Drinking the 2011 Russian Imperial Stout. Being released May 31.

-Rumors to be addressed regarding the Stone hotel.

Stone now has 55000 sq ft of space. There is another location nearby with a 22500 sq ft coldbox. 120 bbl brewhouse designed in Munich.

35% of power produced by solar panels on the roof.

Centrifuge installed at Stone last year, allowing for over 5000 more bbls to be produced.

30000 gallons of water collected and cleaned by Stone’s water reclamation facility. Apparently the water is cleaner than the water out of public system.

20 trucks with biodiesel and one hybrid truck.3 electrical vehicle charging systems to be in place.

115000 bbls produced last year. 36 state distribution.

Largest craft beer distribution company in SoCal. 25 brand portfolio. Between all locations, including Carson and Executive locations: 59000 sq ft.

Citracado expansions will include more kitchen space, parking spots. Kitchen expansion 1236 sq ft. Breaking ground in 60 days on those expansions.

212p: Stone Catering announced. A separate division in Stone Brewing Co.

Stone will open production space just to the south. 55000 sq ft production facility. All packaging and bright tanks will move.400 to 500 thousand increase in production. Fermentation tanks to be added in current location.6.3 million initial investment
Sour beers and barrel aging to take place in another location that’s about to be mentioned….

To the east, more expansions. A 40 to 50 room boutique Stone hotel with event space. Event space will be in and around barrel aging program. Potential outdoor space. 11 million initial investment currently being designed. Open approximately summer 2013. Stone will have new offices for management and the catering division will be there.

222p: Collaboration Green Tea IPA being brewed with 50,000 dollar check being cut by Stone to the Red Cross for Tsunami relief.

226p: question : why does Stone wants to be in the hotel business?
Lots of beer tourism, Stone is a destination stop for out of towners. Also some level of business from nearby hospital expected for Stone hotel.

-Mayor of Escondido, Sam Abed,  just showed up.

-Re: Barrel aged beers: 500ml bottles and 750 bottles to be sold retail out of Stone only. No distribution due to low volume. A lottery system will be developed for bottles. Price will depend on beer that is variable as are the volumes.

Special batch of barrel aged Highway 78 to be released.

Hotel likely to be operated in conjunction with an experienced hotel company. Hotel will have a similar personality of Stone Bistro. The hotel will be very distinct and unique, according to Greg.

235p: Stone estimated to employ 700 people by 2013.

240p: Greg cites Anchor as inspiration getting started. Stone is now the 14th largest craft brewery.

242p: closing remarks. There can be a business model of doing things the right way, and this is our version says Greg.

Mayor of Escondido Sam Abed voices support of Stone and says that the city of Escondido is fully behind Stone.

246p: that’s a wrap!


3 Responses to “Liveblogging Stone Brewing Co.’s Unveiling”

  1. RayRay

    Nice write up and photo…you are on the ball!

  2. The new liberty station location sounds great! I just posted an article on my blog about the new South Park location – they’re accepting job applications!