Tuesday, April 7, 2015

More Breweries Being Planned for Oshkosh

Last week’s news of a brewery in works for the Town of Oshkosh may have been a sign of things to come. At the moment, there are at least four breweries being planned that would be located within the City of Oshkosh.

In deference to the people behind these ventures, I’m going to be short on details about their projects. Each group has told me they’d rather not have too much specific information released at this time. That’s understandable.

Launching a brewery is a daunting task. At this point, the people involved would rather focus on moving their projects forward than field questions they’re unable to confidently answer.

OK, let’s take a look at what’s bubbling up around here.

A Nano Brewery
There’s a nano brewing in the late stages of planning. This is likely to be the first of this group to actually produce and sell beer in Oshkosh. The proposed location is on the south side with its beer to be sold in an Oshkosh tavern. A nano brewery is typically a brewery that produces beer in batch sizes of three barrels or less. Here’s more on the nano brewery concept.

A Small Brewery
A small brewery with a tap room is being planned for a site near Oregon and the River. This project is fairly well on in the planning process with permits having been applied for. There’s a decent chance this brewery could open late this year or early next.

A Contract Brewery
A contract brewery is one that uses the facilities of an existing brewery to produce its beer. It’s an old concept that’s gaining increased acceptance in the craft-beer world. The contract brewery being planned for Oshkosh hopes to use the facilities of a brewery located in the Fox Valley. This brewery is in the recipe development phase, with some of the initial paperwork having been undertaken.

A Production Brewery
This is the most ambitious project of the bunch. As such, it would likely be the last of this bunch to begin producing beer. This would be a full-on production brewery producing several thousand barrels of beer annually. The facility would also have a tap room and beer garden adjoining it. This project is in the early stages of planning. That said, it’s being initiated by an individual with a deep well of experience in the brewing industry. The venture hinges on whether or not capital can be raised for it.

While all this simmers along, there’s the growth of the Fox River Brewing Company. The success of Fox River’s distribution undertaking has the brewery looking to increase output and go back to its roots as a beer producer. It’ll be interesting to see where that leads, as well.

It’s been 20 years since the last brewery was launched in Oshkosh. The drought appears to be nearing its end. Will it be followed by a deluge? Time will tell.

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