Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Built a Brewery: February 14, 2018


We did it.

We BUILT the brewery.

As of this post, it has been 1 year, 8 months, and 22 days since we announced that we were going to open our brewery. In that time, the dream of New Main changed shape as we realized the monumental effort that goes into starting this business. From the first excited moments to this milestone in our history, we are enormously proud and truly humbled to be able to share this victory with all of you.

On Tuesday, February 13th we received our Certificate of Occupancy and passed our initial health inspection, allowing us to open our doors for the first time. We poured our first pints for the friends and neighbors who believed in us and supported us over the last 2 years in a small, private opening party. I'd love to say the first pints of beer were New Main Brew, but I'm incredibly heartened to say instead that the first liquid to issue forth from New Main came from the people that inspired us to do this. For the time being, we are operating our taphouse as a craft beverage bar serving the finest Texas beverages until we can acquire and assemble our own brewing equipment. You can see what all we have in store for you by looking us up on the Digital Pour app right now!

There are countless people directly responsible for sustaining us through our efforts to build New Main, and it would be folly to try to name everyone individually. However, we would not have taken the first step down this path if not for Wade & Sean of Division Brewing opening their home and brewery to us while we were just craft beer fans and bloggers. They taught us how to take pride in what we create, how to mean everything we do, and how to stay firmly connected to the community that is built around a well-crafted pint of beer. We are proud to serve Division Brewing's finest at New Main.

We are thankful for the New Main fans that have followed us on our journey building this brewery, and we can't wait to meet your friends and family. We are officially in soft-opening mode starting Thursday, February 15th, and we are planning our Grand Opening Saturday, February 24th. Our hours of operation will be as follows:

Mon-Wed: Closed
Thursday:  4pm-10pm
Friday: 4pm-10pm
Saturday: 1pm-10pm
Sunday: 1pm-7pm

We'll make a few posts on social media to make sure you know where to park so you won't get towed. We also encourage all of you to designate a driver, take a ride-share through Uber or Lyft, or if you're close enough, take a stroll through Pantego and come on foot. Nothing beats a nice evening walk to your local brewpub!

If you're in the neighborhood, stop in for a pint and see what we've been working on for yourself. Please bear with us as we get our feet wet learning how to run the taphouse, and I promise you we'll work our tails off to build your New Main hangout. Cheers!

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Building a Brewery: January 24, 2018

Oh crud, I've gone and done it again. I went nearly a whole MONTH without telling y'all about our progress! Bad brewer, bad brewer. As always, the lack of news doesn't mean that there is nothing to talk about. On the contrary, there's so much happening that I haven't had a moment to frantically scribble them out for y'all. Buckle in, there's a lot to talk (and get excited) about!

We're thiiiiiiiiiiiiiis close to finishing all of our major renovation items in the brewery. I am pleased to report that our fire sprinkler system is nearly complete, with only a few fittings and inspections left to check off the list. We are also up and running with our new cooler and CO2 equipment, and I'm working on hooking up all our beer and gas lines. The bar is fully built, and we're currently installing shelving underneath for storing beer glasses. We have hot water at the bar, which believe it or not was a somewhat difficult task to accomplish. The conversation room is fully furnished, and we're looking for some nifty signs and artwork to hang in there to make it more homey. We bought and built some bar height tables for seating underneath our string lights, you know, to set the mood. We finished fencing in the back yard fully, and we have a few finishing touches left on the deck. The Mirral is finished and looking mighty fine, thanks to Amanda spending countless hours adding all the right touches. And I'm sure we've done a bunch of other stuff that I've managed to block out of my memory thanks to stress and sleep deprivation!

I was looking through my brew journal the other day (it's manly if it's a journal about beer), and I realized it has been since April of 2017 since I've brewed my own beer. Sad face emoji. In order to rectify this crime, I will be taking a break from the world of sawdust and industrial adhesives to brew up some Pantego Porter with our friend AJ this weekend. This brew sesh will not only mean some of our own real live beer will be
in the world again, but we will also have the honor and privilege to christen the Hoffman Conversation Room, which is dedicated to AJ's father's memory. We are also building up our collection of fine Texas Craft beers for our opening events. I'd love to tease our lineup, but I think pictures speak louder than words. Keep an eye on our Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter accounts for hints as to what we have in store for you. There may already be a couple hints out there...

Enough already! When is the opening?!
Unfortunately, it's not quite up to me. That is to say I'm doing everything in my power to make it as soon as possible, but we have various agencies and governing bodies that have to inspect and approve our facility before we can invite the general public in for a pint. I can tell you when I'd like the opening to be: September of last year. That's when I was emotionally ready to fling wide our doors and commence to pours, but alas the real world works a bit differently. I will say this: February 2018 is going to be an important month in the history of New Main Brewing. Again, like share, and subscribe to our Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter feeds so you'll be the first to know when our opening weekend will be.

Folks, I cannot tell you how much your readership and support has meant to all of us at New Main Brewing. From a humble home brewer's blog to budding entrepreneurs, we wouldn't be anywhere without the community that has formed around us. We love running into y'all at other breweries in DFW, chatting over email and Facebook, and reading your comments on our Instagram posts. When we've had a long day of hard work at the brewery, those little things help us wake up the next morning to keep doing it for another day. We can't wait to pour your first New Main brew.

Podcast Alert!

Don't forget, you can hear weekly updates on the brewery by subscribing and listening to our unofficial podcast, Casually Lit. Jason, Rohde, Chris, and David belly up to the microphones each week to talk about everything craft beer and entertainment. We bring on guests in the local craft beer scene who are all doing some pretty awesome things in our community. You'll laugh, you'll learn, and hopefully, you'll get a little Casually Lit. It's not a podcast, it's a show!

And, for a sneak peek of the New Main taproom, make sure to watch our #CasualFriday videos where we take one craft beer and review it from the comfort of our brewery. This week we sampled Land Yacht IPA from Armadillo Ale Works in Denton. See what we had to say!

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Building a Brewery: December 27, 2017

We have a nice, big, juicy update for y'all this week. But first, Merry Christmas, and Happy New Year! I hope Santa brought each of y'all the perfect present, and I hope you have your shiny new list of New Year's resolutions scrawled out and ready to display prominently, if not passive-aggressively at eye-level on the fridge. First at the top of our list is opening our taproom and events venue AS SOON AS HUMANLY POSSIBLE. 

To that end, the holidays were no excuse for us to take a load off and stop chipping away at the to-do list for our opening. We even drafted our friends and family into helping us with some work on the taproom. We added another coat of gold paint to our mirror mural... our mirral? We also began building the actual counter and bartop over which countless pints, growlers, crowlers, flights, and tasters will be shared with you fine people. 

There is still plenty left to do to finalize these items, but we certainly appreciated several extra sets of hands pushing us a few steps closer to our dream.

Do y'all remember when I set out on this blogging journey over a year ago and said we'd share everything with y'all, good and bad, uplifting and down-bringing, warts and all? 

Wart time.

We bought a walk-in cooler from a fella on Craigslist about 6 months ago, and we've been impatiently waiting to hook it up while our contractors worked on some interior improvements necessary for its installation. Once we got the all clear from contractors and inspectors, we excitedly assembled the box, like Christmas morning in reverse. With no small amount of effort, hard work, and swears sweat, we were finally ready to wire it up and get it cold. Our good friend Ron gave me a crash course in electrical work, and we were ready to recharge the fridge unit and cool that baby down. We even used old fence pickets to give the facade an artsy up-cycled look.

We called some fridge techs to come out and breathe life into the empty shell. You ever heard that bad news comes in threes? One: the unit runs on an extremely expensive, out of date refrigerant that is also far less efficient than the current, cheaper refrigerant. Two: with all the holes drilled for wiring, mounting, and the reach-in doors, (forget about the panels that refused to latch together for a proper seal) the condenser and fan would be working overtime just to maintain the proper temperature, IF it even passed inspection. Three: WHEN, not if, the unit failed every couple of weeks, it would be somewhere around $1,000 to "fix" it, and the techs could not warranty any work they did given its age and likelihood to continue crapping out on us. Yay, small business ownership!

So after some quick mafs, I figured it would be cheaper in the long run to replace the box entirely rather than try to limp to our grand opening with the pile of crap we bought from a stranger on the internet. (Insert cliche about getting what you pay for). We began searching desperately for anyone who could get us a cooler in the next 2 weeks, becoming "those people" who don't care that it's Christmas and New Year's soon, and that the company is operating on a skeleton crew, Sheryl, we need it yesterday, by God! No less than 16 conversations and quotes later, we found someone who could get us a running box by New Years. The box arrives tomorrow, and we're going to bust ass to get it running by January 1 so we can start grabbing the finest beverages available for our opening.

To help us recover from our walk-in woes, we were also joined by some new friends of the brewery, Dirk and Alexa for some much-needed brewery cleaning and sign installation. We rented a 30 cubic yard dumpster to throw away pretty much every pile of refuse that builds up after a year of renovation. Toilets, sinks, boxes, sawdust, old fences, you name it. The dumpster arrived at 11am and was full before 3pm the same day. We shed blood, sweat, and tears getting the building cleared out, and I don't mean that symbolically. Alexa stepped on a nail while hauling fence panels to the dumpster (did you know tetanus shots are good for 10 years? Yay!), everyone was sweating profusely in the 80 degree December-in-Texas afternoon, and I'll admit I shed a few tears of joy after we mounted our sign out front of our building.

There's no rest for the weary, and no shortage of axioms and cliches in the beer blogging world. We still have a lot of work to do to open our doors and officially welcome you to the New Main Taproom and Events Center. Each passing day of hard work and dedication by us, our loyal friends and helpers, and each of you sharing our story with friends and family brings us all closer to that first foamy pint. We hope your holidays are safe, warm, and restful. See y'all again real soon!

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Building a Brewery: December 5, 2017

It's beginning to look a lot like a taproom! The past few weeks have been monumentally productive for New Main Brewing. We have been working on furnishing our conversation room, completing some major plumbing and mechanical work, building new signage to help bring people in off the street, and getting ready to start building up our beer stock.


Social Media & Signage

For those of y'all following our social media, you know that we just reached 1,000 likes on Facebook. That is a huge deal for us! We are so thankful to each and every one of you who mentioned New Main Brewing to a friend or coworker, and we look forward to a thousand more people to meet in the future. You may have also noticed on social media all of the photos on social media of us swinging hammers and toiling tirelessly inside our space. Our main sign will be placed over the existing sign in front of our building (because up-cycling), and should be easily seen and read from Pioneer Parkway - Spur 303. We will be staining and sealing all of the wood to keep it weather-proof, then we will install that bad boy very soon. Expect lots more photos from artistic angles and such.

Taproom Improvements

We have also been working on a creative solution to there being mirrors on almost every vertical surface in our building. We're planning a simple mural to cover a good portion of these mirrors, which should make the taproom feel more like a taproom and less like Zumba class - not that there's anything wrong with that. We have also been replacing some lighting fixtures in the conversation room to bring a little warmth and comfort to the place. We spent the last few weeks scouring DFW and Facebook Marketplace for inexpensive but tasteful furniture for an eclectic mix of pieces that will make your beer drinking experience richer. As a bonus, I've meet even more folks excited to come see us once we open (and maybe sit in their old chairs for nostalgia's sake).

T.A.B.C. & B.E.E.R.

We are also proud to announce that our TABC licensing came through! We are now authorized to purchase beer, cider, kombucha, coffee, or whatever beverage you would like to see issuing from one of our 20 taps. We assembled our cold room this past weekend, and with a few connections here and there, soon we should have her cold and ready to start amassing a great selection of Texas craft beverages. We have a handful of suggestions so far, but we'd love to hear more about what y'all are excited to try. We need you to tell us what you want to drink, so email and let us know what we need to track down. 

New Main Studios

New Main Brewing has also become the new home to our beer-centric podcast, Casually Lit. Casually Lit is basically a weekly bottle share where our friends Jason, Rohde, Chris and I share five or so independent brews and chat about what's moving and shaking in the Craft Beer scene. We discuss things like proper aging of beer, the latest trends in new beer styles, and we bring on guests from across the spectrum of beer experience - from your average macro beer drinker to actual professional brewers and beer journalists. If you enjoy the types of conversations overheard at any given brewery tour or taproom, then you should love our show as much as we love bringing it to you. Fair warning, we discuss adult topics with adult language, so it might not be great for the kiddos.

With the help of some great friends, we have been transforming this great big shell into our new home (just like a nautilus). We still have a large amount of work to do, but there is most certainly a light at the end of the tunnel. The number one question on all of your minds, I'm sure, is "When are y'all going to open?!" The best answer I can give you is "Not soon enough," but I can say with finality that we are weeks away from a couple soft opening events. 

We will likely have our Grand Opening in January 2018, but we have not set a date yet. Join our mailing list to be included when we send our invites out for the upcoming events in our newly remodeled taproom, and you'll be the first to know when we are ready to fling our doors wide and serve the finest beverages Texas has to offer. Cheers!

Friday, November 17, 2017

Building a Brewery: November 17, 2017

Ah, don't you just love fall? The crisp, cool air, the sound of leaves crunching underfoot, sweet holiday drinks, the ever-present reminder of the enormous hulking pile of work that needs to be done before you can open your craft beverage taproom and events center? Oh, is that last one just me?

Y'all, there truly is a lot to get done, but we've been chipping away at it steadily for the last several months. I'm sorry we couldn't make the group work party happen last month, but a certain waste removal company botched the dumpster rental so it would have all been for naught. Instead, my hard-working brother Andrew brought his pick-m-up truck and a big ol' trash trailer for us to load up. We took 2 loads to the dump, cut down lots of overgrown shrubs and bushes, and laid some brand new decking in the backyard. It's really starting to shape up into the beergarden of our dreams!

I have also been busy on the paperwork front. Our TABC permit is very close to being issued. We have been meeting and submitting plans to the Town of Pantego for various renovation items like our sprinkler system, new drain for the bar sink, hookups for the cold room, and the like. I've been spending an odd day here and there each week in the brewery to tackle some of the minor plumbing/painting/decking/cursing activities, and slowly but surely, a craft beverage taproom and events center is peeking out from under the pile.

Now comes the fun part. We need y'all to tell us which Texas craft beer, cider, coffee, tea, or other beverages you want to drink when we open our doors soon! We are honored that we get to share some of our brewing friends' fine beverages with our fans, but we'd also love to try something out that we've never had before. So we need y'all to email us with your suggestions at for your favorite local craft beverages that you want to see on our tap wall (doesn't have to be alcoholic either, we'll carry craft sodas as well!). We'll try our very hardest to grab what we can for our soft and grand opening events. 

Remember, we want to support and grow the Texas craft movement, so please keep your recommendations inside the borders of the Lone Star State. Also bear in mind that we will not be signing with a distributor right out of the gate, so that means I'll have to physically drive to these breweries/cideries/coffee shops to pick up the kegs (and return them!). Please give me a heads up if I'm going to have to make a road trip out of the area so I can try to source more than one brewery or beverage manufacturer. Kill two brews with one stone, so to speak.

"But David, what if I don't have any recommendations? How can I help New Main Brewing get open?" 

Well I'm glad you asked, random citizen! The biggest thing you can help us out with right now is getting the word out about our upcoming opening. We are still trying to pinpoint an exact date for opening, but it will likely be the end of December or possibly the first part of January 2018. That's a month and a half of liking our Instagram posts. That's a good solid 6 weeks of bringing up New Main casually in conversations at work. That's 45ish days of tagging a friend in our Facebook posts. That's over a 1,000 hours wherein you can go knocking door-to-door to shout out your excitement for New Main Brewing. That's nearly 65,000 minutes that you could spend imagining yourself in our taproom with your favorite people around and favorite beverage in hand.

With Thanksgiving right around the corner, we know many of y'all will be travelling to celebrate with loved ones. Please drink responsibly, and designate a driver. And hey, while Uncle Jimbo is passing the mashed potatoes around the dinner table, maybe mention to everyone that you're excited to be taking part in the Great American Craft Movement with us at New Main Brewing in Pantego, Texas. We can't wait to open our doors and serve you a nice cold pint of friendship. Cheers!

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Building a Brewery: October 17, 2017

It's time to swing some hammers, quite literally! Renovations are in full swing at New Main Brewing as we work toward our goal of opening our doors and taps for y'all by the end of the year!

But we need your help!

On Saturday, October 21 from 2PM-4PM we will be working on the backyard beergarden to turn it into one of the coolest features of our amazing New Main Brewing facility. We will be wrecking out some of the existing dilapidated fence, dumping the pile of deck boards, trimming some overgrown branches, and maybe even installing the new decking. As much fun as that all sounds like, it would be ten times easier if there were ten more people besides little old me.

That's where YOU come in!

We need about 8-10 people ready to roll up their sleeves and tackle the brewery's backyard honey-do list with us. Sure, we could pay professionals to do a lot of this stuff, but: a) we ain't got that kind of money and 2) it would take the fun out of #buildingabrewery. Plus, how else are you going to get an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at our taproom, personally guided by the founders of New Main Brewing?

We definitely don't want to work y'all to death, so we're capping it at an even 2 hours from 2pm to 4pm. Plenty of time to come work up a sweat with us, hit the showers, and get back out to your weekend merrymaking. Pretty soon, you can hang out in our brand beergarden, sipping some of the finest beverages made in the great state of Texas, and tell all your friends that YOU helped build this place. There's nothing quite like the sense of accomplishment achieved by a little hard work. 

And you can bet your socks that we'll remember your hard work when it comes time to paint our faithful fans' names on our Wall of Supporters, featured prominently in our taproom. Fun fact, each of our Wall of Supporters members will be treated to discounts, first crack at new beers, and a whole bunch of other cool stuff we haven't even thought of yet!

So come on out this Saturday, October 21st from 2PM to 4PM to help us do this thing. If you can make it, PLEASE RSVP by emailing With your help, we can stay on track to open before the end of this year. Cheers!

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Building a Brewery: September 20, 2017

I owed everyone an update last week, so I apologize for missing it. We were at mile 26 in the marathon that has been our fundraising phase. Finally, after countless forms, signatures, research, copies, scans, and no small amount of faith, I'm pleased to report that we closed on our SBA loan this morning! This means we can finally schedule some of our heavier renovation items with contractors and start really putting New Main Brewing together.

Our main renovation item to accomplish is the installation of fire sprinklers in the building. The contractor will connect a brand new fire line to the water main out front, feed it to the building, and then hang a lattice work of pipes from the ceiling to cover every square foot of the building with fire protection. Aside from that, we need to extend water and sewer services to our bar area so that we can provide clean glassware for your favorite craft beverages. We also need to run a dedicated electrical circuit over to the cold room to keep those beverages cooled and ready to pour.

From there it's a simple matter of replacing the deck boards we stripped a few months ago, tearing out and rebuilding the pathetic excuse for a fence that lines our backyard, new front door, rework the restrooms, new sign, and, and, and... Okay, so we still have A LOT of work to do before we open our doors to the public. At least we now have everything we need in order to get started on that work in earnest.

The next thing we're going to do is bang out a schedule for each part of the very long list of renovation items. Whenever possible, we'll still work in some opportunities for you fine people to come hang out with us and swing a hammer. Hell, we may even get back to brewing sometime soon to reward all of our patient fans and friends. Opening as a taproom serving our friends' Texan-made fine beverages will help us get off the ground, but we're still dedicated to brewing and serving our award-winning beer just as soon as humanly possible.

In the months leading up to our opening, we'd love to hear from y'all as to which craft beverages from Texas you'd like us to pour when we get open. Drop us a line on our Facebook page or email us at and we'll make sure to procure the finest beer, cider, tea, coffee, or kombucha we can get our hands on! Cheers!