Yesterday I visited a former Chrysler missile plant in Central Florida. No, I wasn't doing research for a story on NASA (try NASA.gov, LOL). Rather, I was fortunate enough to be invited to tag along with a few managers from Gold Coast Distributors and Ed Roberts up to see Florida Beer Company's new brewery in Cape Canaveral yesterday! I think they asked because adding a fifth body required rental of a nice SUV and made the HOV lanes a no-brainer in the crappy Friday rush hour traffics (yep, plural, both ways).
We were greeted by brewery owner Jim at the entrance, and all of us were immediately impressed by the tasting room space as well as what we could see through the multiple giant windows displaying the brewery. Excellent space, really fun artwork, impressive custom bar with lots of taps, and tons of little details everywhere. After a few quick greetings and pictures, Jim took us on an in-depth tour of the brewery. We started in the lab, which for a former scientist was pretty cool.
|I lifted this photo from Florida Beer's Facebook page after Corey (back) posted it!|
After seeing some of the tanks and brewing areas, we were led to see the different stages in the bottling line. Next time I'm invited back (if there is one) I'm going to take a rubber glove to re-enact that Laverne and Shirley intro song video from their Shotz Beer Days! Seriously though, we got to see every stage of the bottling process, from bottle disinfecting, filling, capping, rinsing, labeling, packaging, boxing... and of course drinking! I promise to try to upload a few of the short videos I took here soon!
|Jim shows off the new packaging for Sunshine State Pils!|
Jim let us know that he still has a few private functions scheduled for the next few weeks. However, around April 28th (call first, or actually try their Facebook page or Twitter for the most up-to-date info), the tasting room will be opened daily. If you are drinking, they will stay open (I think I heard those are their approximate hours, though they are subject to change). But watch out for weekly specials for Monday Night Football and other similar regular sporting events are on TV. Florida Beer's Taproom will have a bunch of menus to order food in and plans on having a regular food truck lineup as well.
So after six plus hours of fabulous driving by Corey, we arrived home safely. Was a great day! This morning, however, my wife was pissed that I didn't take more pictures with me in them. She was even "tagged" (or whatever you call it) on the group photo above when SFLonTap did one of those Facebook-thingy-thing posts. But I reminded her of the zit on my nose and we both had a good chuckle.
Thanks for the hospitality, Jim. Thanks for the invite, Ed, Corey, Brett and Darren!