What if there was something like a startup accelerator, but for brewers?
Melanie Phelan, one of the co-founders, explained what inspired the unique idea behind Launch Brewing. Mike Peters and Ben Katt, the other two founders, had been working with Melanie on a previous project. Mike had the idea to open a brewery per year, which seemed generally easy except for one key piece— finding the brewers.
The barrier to entry for a brewery can be anywhere from $600,000 to $1 million just for the brewing equipment alone. It’s also difficult for brewers to get the foundational loans because breweries are often viewed as riskier than bars. Melanie and her team wanted to lower this barrier and raise aspiring brewers up to a level that they can be responsible for their own business. With this model, the brewers will be learning on the same equipment they will be using in the future which involves less of a learning curve.
The traditional brewhouse usually focuses on its own specialities and generally has the same offerings for each visit. This is where Launch Brewing stand out. It exists to shine the spotlight on local, homegrown brewers who strive to bring new, inventive brews to the table.
The concept behind Launch Brewing is unique to the craft brew industry. Each brewer will work in the original Launch space for between 6-12 months and then move up to own their very own brewery, with the Launch team supporting them along the way.
This structure allows for Launch to constantly be offering new, fresh types of beer. Each brewer will bring their own style to craft beer, allowing customers to have a unique experience for each visit. With twenty taps available at one time, you’re bound to find a beer that will appeal to you.
Launch Brewing is excited to have customers taste all of their options and are planning on offering a custom flight of all 20 beers. Each type will be available in a 1 oz. pour so you’re likely to find your new favorite.
Already, the brewery has two local Omaha brewers signed on. Each has different experiences and are offering their own spin on craft beer. With these unique perspectives, Launch is excited to offer some fun, crazy beers along with more classic tastes.
So, what landed Launch in the heart of Omaha? The team explored beer statistics for the state and found that the state only drinks 3.4% as craft beer opposed to canned beer. From there, they decided that there was plenty of room for craft beer in the market.
They decided that the brewery model was a good middle ground between bar and restaurant. Breweries are also few and far between in the area. The group of founders decided there needed to be a little bit more balance. They plan on sticking to the Omaha area as they expand their brewers to different locations.
Offering food, beer, and a fun atmosphere, Launch is sure to be hotspot to hangout and enjoy beer. The space also includes a large window at the back, so customers can watch the beer being brewed. The brewers will play an active role, talking about beer and educating others about the process.
One of Launch’s core values is “Everyone is Welcome” which describes the atmosphere Melanie is hoping to foster. She wants everyone to be included in the experience, with non-alcoholic options, cocktails, and healthy foods being offered alongside beer.
“It is an entrepreneurial, fun, everyone-is-welcome-type of feel.”
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