3 Daughters Brewing Update and Some Thoughts on Volume

Jeff Houck of TBO.com brings us an update on 3 Daughters brewing. Most importantly, he answers the question: “What does $1.5M buy you?” Apparently a small craft brewery in St. Pete.

Weaver (home-brewer and chef turned head brewer for 3 Daughters — ed.) has nine beer recipes finished, including a dunkelweizen, a Russian imperial stout, a brown ale, an India pale ale, an Irish red an oatmeal stout, a summer wheat and a porter. The signature beer to start with: the Beach Blonde Ale, which comes in at a very drinkable 5 percent alcohol by volume.

Yum. Who doesn’t love a RIS? Seems like they’re going to play off their local beach culture, too, and capture the boat and lawn-work crowd too. And what about volume?

Build-out is finishing on the tasting room at the front of the building, which will include a 30-barrel brewhouse and a 1-barrel pilot system and about 180 barrels of brewing space. Harting already has plans for three more expansions to add fermentation capacity.

A 30-barrel brewhouse and a 180 barrel “brewing space” – must mean 180 barrels of fermentation and finishing space, with room to grow. Look out Tampa Bay, the beer flood is coming! Here comes Motorworks, too with a rumored 30-barrel brewhouse less than an hour or so south of there, not to mention the two other breweries in St. Pete – both of which have slightly different business models. Between the two production breweries alone, that’s about two pints each for each and every beer drinking adult in the Tampa Bay area – and that’s only assuming 100 brew days and only those two breweries. If they hit 200 brew-days (which is 4 full brews a week), then that’s four pints per beer drinker per year from just two breweries. We have about 20 breweries in the Tampa Bay area, not counting brew pubs. My prediction: things may be real interesting in about 18 months. Simple and imprecise math results in an estimate of 20 pints of beer per beer drinker in Tampa Bay, just from local craft breweries, not including the big brands. That’s not a lot of beer. US per-capita consumption is 78 liters (164 pints!). A big assumption here: 100% local consumption. We already know that the Godfather of local brewers has multi-state distribution already, which eases the burden on the local market to drink all this beer.

I’ll keep poking at the numbers as my crystal ball gets a little more clear, but one thing’s for sure: we’re looking at some incredible variety and availability here in the Tampa Bay area. Now if we could only get this beer to market in a quick and efficient manner…

Calculations: 30 + 30 barrels = 60 barrels; 31 gallons per barrel = 1,860 gallons per brew. 100 brew days (two brews a week and two weeks off) = 186,000 gallons of beer a year. 8 pints in a gallon = 1.48 million pints per year. There are about 3 million people 18 and up in Tampa Bay. 2/3 of them of are drinkers. 36% of them drink beer, that’s about 720,000 people. 1.48 million pints into 720,000 people is about two pints per person per year at only 100 brew days from just TWO breweries.