Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Good News Abound, Norms and Sierra Nevada Brewery

Great news! Norm's of Vienna is here to stay, as reported by the Washington Post this morning:

"The Fresh Market, which is set to open this summer, issued this statement, and posted it on the “Save Norm’s” Facebook page: “Being responsible and active participants in the community is what The Fresh Market does and is an important part of who we are. As we have learned more about the Vienna community it has become apparent that Norm’s Beer & Wine is an integral part of the fabric of Vienna. We will work with Norm so that he can continue to serve his patrons from his existing location. We look forward to being neighbors with Norm’s Beer & Wine and together serving the residents of Vienna for many years to come.”

I actually was at a going away party this weekend for a Norm's employee, Jeff (he's moving to Cali). I had the opporunity to sit down and ask Norm how things were and he said that things with Fresh Market were on the mend and he hoped to have something final from them soon. At the time I had no idea he meant this soon. Alls well that ends well, I suppose. The Save Norm's Facebook page attracted over 1,700 supporters. Maybe there is something to this Facebook (this is a huge acknowledgement coming from a non-Facebooker).

In other news I read an article today in the Roanoke Times that Christiansburg, VA is currently #2 on Sierra Nevada's list of top locations to build their east coast brewing facility. The current #1 spot is in Blount County Tennesse, about 90 miles south of Knoxville.

"The company began looking for an East Coast site several years ago and narrowed the list from several hundred east of the Mississippi. The Christiansburg site and the Tennessee site were "head and shoulders" above others looked at in terms of quality of life, Manley said"(company spokeman)

The list of things that SN is looking for is refeshing. From a business perspective they would like good quality water and access to rail and shipping. Additionally, and perhaps more important they would like a nice community, low crime rate, good music scene, and closeness to the outdoors. Christiansburg/Blacksburg has got all of those things, that's why I loved going to school there. Maybe there is a homecoming in the works if SN decides to get started in C'burg.

"The new plant, which would include brewing and bottling facilities and a restaurant and brew pub, would employ about 100, from busboys to engineers, Manley said. Proximity to Virginia Tech is a plus, he said. The company often hires students from California State University at Chico for its plant.

The new brewery would produce up to 500,000 barrels of beer a year (a barrel is about 31 gallons), or roughly half what the Chico plant produces."

Last, your boy ordered an all-grain kit from northern brewer. I don't usual brew from kits, I like to come up with the recipes myself, but when I saw that Northern Brewer was offering clone kits in their pro beer series for Surly Brewing Co of Minnesota, I had to buy one. A nice big malty amercan brown ale should make for a good first all grain experience. I'm hoping to squeeze some brewing in on Saturday morning. I'll keep you posted.


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