Ship Bottom Brewery Construction Moves Along

Jun 08, 2016
Photo by: Ryan Morrill

People are buzzing about the Ship Bottom Brewery after its presence at last weekend’s Hop Sauce Festival. Meanwhile, at Bay Village in Beach Haven, the site of the future Ship Bottom Brew House and Taproom, the buzzing sound was quite literal. Since last week, electricians have been drilling holes in the walls, construction crews have been barking instructions back and forth to one another and on Thursday several massive tanks were hoisted into the building.

Inside the building the skeleton of the brewery is beginning to become visible. Though no date has been set, the brewery is shooting to open the doors of its new taproom by July 4. The loft space will be shared between patrons of the taproom and the brewing team, headed by brewmaster Jake Stablein.

Stablein will likely spend a lot of his time working at the mash tun making wort, a sugar-water substance created by mixing malted barley with hot water. Inside the mash tun, warm water converts starches in the barley into fermented sugars. Stablein will be adding hops and other flavors into the mix. In the Chicken or the Egg IPA for instance, Stablein added honey and habañero peppers along with hops. The mash tun was one of the large pieces of equipment lifted into the building last week.

In addition to the mash tun, the crew also moved in the fermentation tanks that are lined up along the back wall of the brewhouse. According to Stablein, it is in these large, cone-shaped tanks that “the beer becomes beer.”

Inside the fermentation tanks, the sugar of the wort is metabolized as yeast and carbon dioxide. Stablein says “it’s pretty gross in there.” There are “all kinds of gluten molecules, and other molecules, and all the yeasts are in a flurry.” But because of the cone shape of the fermentation tank, when the “yeasts are done working, they settle to the bottom.” This allows Stablein to easily separate the yeast and the liquid.

After going through the fermentation tanks, the beer is carbonated and kegged out of the serving vessels, which were put in place last week as well.

Once the new brewhouse is operational, it will be totally incorporated in the same room as the bar space. Patrons of the bar will have the opportunity to watch Stablein brewing Ship Bottom Brewery beers as they enjoy them. All the while, they can read pamphlets that explain the brewing process in detail. Stablein envisions people coming right off the beach into the taproom, which is fortunate because the bar will be, in his words, “a wet zone.”

Though he has the freedom to brew “pretty much whatever I want to,” Stablein anticipates that summer drinkers will like a “nice light beer to drink in the sun, about 4 percent abv.” So this summer, Stablein plans to brew a blueberry hefeweizen on all the new equipment.

Though they hope to be open by July 4, there is no set date for a grand opening at the moment. But after installing the massive brewing equipment into a loft space, it is starting to become clear what the Ship Bottom Brewery taproom will look like when it does open.

— Tim Hone

timhone@thesandpaper.net

(Photo by: Ryan Morrill )
(Photo by: Ryan Morrill )
(Photo by: Ryan Morrill )
(Photo by: Ryan Morrill )
(Photo by: Ryan Morrill )
(Photo by: Ryan Morrill )
(Photo by: Ryan Morrill )
(Photo by: Ryan Morrill )
(Photo by: Ryan Morrill )
(Photo by: Ryan Morrill )
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