What is hobo brewing?

If you’ve seen it written on our labels, you might have wondered – what do we mean by “hobo brewed”?

Many small breweries trying to start out don’t have enough cash to buy the brewhouse of their dreams. We definitely don’t. We are two young families of mad keen brewers, deeply passionate about delicious, well made brews. The bank told us to go sell some beer to prove we are a good bet to loan the cash to buy the brewhouse we need to make those great brews.

How do you sell some beer if you don’t have a brewery?

Most small players in the same position as us do a thing called contract brewing. This means that you pay a company who has spare space in their brewhouse to make you some beer. You place your label on it, and sell it as your own. When you produce beer this way, the Tax Office licencing stipulates you’re not allowed to be onsite when it’s brewed. Production of your beer is entirely in the hands of others and potentially the guys/gals making your beer don’t have the love and tenderness for your product that you do.

With over 10 years commercial brewing experience between them, Ben and Aaron not only wanted to create their own beer label, but being in control of the production was non-negotiable.  To our rescue came Gus, with a brewhouse that he was happy for Ben and Aaron to take control of on Watts River Brew Days. We are licensed to produce beer at Gus’s brewery like any brewer with their own brewhouse.

So, the short version, hobo brewing is when you move in like hobos to someone else’s brewery and brew on it like it’s your own. We’re basically crashing on a good friend’s couch until we can setup our own place…

Another name for this is Gypsy brewing.

We wanted to be completely transparent about where and how our beer is produced, as many others in the industry choose a more opaque strategy. We believe consumers who want to know, should be able to easily find out about what’s in their glass.

Hanna