A new brewery is opening in Braddock, Wednesday. Two Carnegie Mellon grads are the brain children behind The Brew Gentlemen
, opening in the former Halco Electric Supply store at 512 Braddock Ave. Matt Katase and Asa Foster created their first beer in the garage of their fraternity house and have been working toward this day ever since.
"We were both kinda unsure about pursuing careers on the tracts we were on," says Katase, originally of Kailua-Kona, Hawaii. "Beer seemed like a happy medium that allowed us to wear multiple hats. So far, no two days have been the same."
Since 2010, Katase and Foster have poured all of their time and resources into creating both a brewery and a tap room to brew and sell their beer. They both changed their majors, Katase from math to operations research and entrepreneurship and Foster from art to digital media and fabrication. Katase took an independent study and worked with a mentor to build The Brew Gentlemen business plan.
After a successful Kickstarter
campaign, which raised $32,118, they were off to the races, building their brewery and perfecting their recipes with their own four hands.
They chose to open their brewery in Braddock because they loved the energy of the small city and could see its potential.
"Intially when we were writing the business plan and working on all of that our entrepreneurship professor made us choose three potential locations," Katase says. "Braddock was kind of an afterthought. Asa mentioned it because he had taken a class called Mapping Braddock and spent a lot of time down here and was drawn to the energy. In senior year we spent a morning walking around and after that, it had to be in Braddock."
That first beer, brewed back in 2010 is called White Sky, a wheat beer brewed with chai tea spices. They jokingly call it their "year round seasonal," because it evokes a different seasonal sense memory for everyone who tastes it. They've gone on to produce several beers with clever, regional names such as General Braddock.
In Feb. of this year they hired master brewer Brandon Capps who has chops from working as an Anheuser Busch/InBev
systems and processes engineer.
And what about the name?
"It started as kind of a joke," Katase says. "Both Asa and I were in the same frat, Sigma Alpha Epsilon and the frat motto is 'The true gentlemen.' After trying our beer one of our other friends joked and called us 'the brew gentleman.'"
Tomorrow beginning at 4PM The Brew Gentlemen are holding their grand opening, where they'll sell growlers and pints and the mac n' cheese food truck, Mac and Gold
, as well as Street Foods
will be on hand for grub.
Source: The Brew Gentlemen, Matt Katase.