Renegade Brewing, a neighborhood spot in the Santa Fe Arts District, plans to take advantage of a new mobile canning operation to get its beer out to more people.
Owners Brian and Khara O'Connell will begin canning their top-selling beer, Ryeteous Rye, this spring or summer with help from Mobile Canning, a Longmont-based operation that is already doing work for Greeley's Crabtree Brewing Company. They'll use sixteen-ounce tallboy cans and group them either in four-packs or six-packs.
"And to really start pumping out cans, we'll need another tank," says Brian, who plans to order a new, fifteen-barrel fermenter this week so that he can have enough beer on hand.
Renegade opened in June 2011, but the brewery has grown fast, adding two employees with the possibility of taking on a third soon. "Every month we're busier than the month before," Brian says.
The O'Connells began with a fifteen-barrel system, "which was a lot to bite off at first," Brian says, but adds that they're glad they did because it has allowed Renegade to expand faster.
"We have a great neighborhood following," Khara says, noting that the arts district's First Friday program has helped bring in a lot of new customers. "Other breweries spend a lot of money putting on big events. But we get one for free every month."
Ryeteous Rye is a super hoppy beer at more than 100 IBUs that has been balanced with malt and rye. It weighs in at 7 percent ABV.
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Mobile Canning also got its start last year, and plans to begin canning beers for at least four or five Colorado breweries in the next few months. "No one wants twelve-ounce cans," points out company co-owner Pat Hartman. "Everyone wants a pint. That seems to be the way to go and package it up with a four-pack with a nice handle on it."
Hartman says his company -- which brings its equipment to each brewery on a truck -- is a good way for smaller breweries that don't want to invest in their own canning line to break into the market. "We are just scratching the surface here on the Front Range and in the mountains," he observes.