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Everything posted by Foreshot

  1. Here's an interesting new one, the Norlan glass:
  2. Aside from Glencairn, what do you use for a nosing glass? I've use several different non-whiskey specific glasses (wine, old fashion, etc). I'm trying to build my nosing palate up and figure I could get something that would help. Thanks in advance.
  3. Thanks ACDC & Odin. Ralfy's Glass review: I like the Ardbeg glass with the cover (Odin's Grappa glass), pint and cognac glasses. I want to be able to get the full array of aromas. The pint glass peaks my interest. It might be bad for drinking but nosing I think it has potential. Ardbeg glass, not bad at £5 each with cover:
  4. Thanks Odin. I probably will order these: It's set of 6. I need that as my wife like to point out, I break everything.
  5. Tangential to your topic - Read about Six Sigma or Lean manufacturing. It's about eliminating waste in your processes. Two heavy hitters: Lean's "TIM WOODS" - Lean's 5S - The idea is to reduce the amount of time you're doing things that don't make you money. An example - if you use a specific tool all the time put it in a place that's easy to get to it instead of mixing it in with a drawer full of other things. (5s) That reduces the time you're looking for it. Fastcap has some great videos showing real examples:
  6. Nothing technical, but enjoyable Episode 1: Episode 2: Episode 3:
  7. The biggest question is the ROI - How much money is implementing the system likely to save you in lost downtime? I would think if you're in an urban area 2-3 days and you would be able to get most simpler stuff fixed. If you're more rural then if might take longer. (Repair Days) * (Number of failures yearly) * (Labor lost) = basic yearly "Downtime" cost. - How often do you think the Chiller is going to break down? - How long do you think it would take to get something simple fixed? (Repair guy local? Parts? Common brand/size of cooler vs exotic/odd size?) - Is the emergency system itself likely to cause failures? (It appears to be getting complicated. The more complicated something is the more likely it is going to break.) - Are you going to test it? How often? - If the system is activated will it affect the glycol system and will you have to do maintenance on it after? At what cost? - Will the system be able to cover workflow 100% while the chiller is down?
  8. Like SCD said there isn't a great book on distilling. I'm up to 24+ and I still wouldn't say there is a single one that covers everything. It's best to start reading and keep a notebook. Jot down the key ideas you run across. I started a private blog to keep track of posts and links from here and other websites with searchable notes.
  9. Welcome! Let us know when you're going to open. I'm in the Pgh area so it would make a fun trip to visit you and Hedgebird and sample some of your work. Hopefully your paperwork goes though without any trouble.
  10. Tell them your answer is {confidential}. That kind of answer is BS. I can understand if they want some NDA, but totally confidential is crap. It seems like an answer a company that is faking it until they make it. They could be awesome but too many warning signs.
  11. Thanks Odin. I really like the part on ester formation and the exploration of the Maillard reaction. You're contributing a lot to knowledge of distillers everywhere.
  12. I've been to Huffy2K's distillery several times. He's put a ton of work into it and it shows. It's really a great example of a tasting room/event space.
  13. > Of course if your only ambition is to run a successful distillery-giftshop-cocktail lounge in your hometown, your valuation will likely be less dependent on your case volume and growth potential, and more dependent on your profitability and potential to generate dividends in a limited size market. It would probably be valued more closely with that of a successful local restaurant or bar. Spot on, I totally agree with this.
  14. >Something like 6X gross revenue might be worth considering as a starting point for negotiations, i.e. $1M in sales translating to a $6M valuation. When I see gross revenue valuations most are between 1x and 3x. Starting at 6x might be a hard sell to someone. Most people want a 3-5 year return of their investment not including stock price increases, at 6x gross revenue that will be tough to do. I'm not saying it's not a place to start, but I would not expect to close near there.
  15. From personal experience: Keen investors will make up their own numbers, other people will be in it to help out with profit as a secondary motive. With less than 3-5 years of sales history it will be hard to build any kind of model that a savvy investor will follow. Since you're newer you have a lot of startup costs in your numbers that will throw off a valuation. Go to a lawyer or business broker and see if they can help looking at pier company sales. If you look at it sans the alcohol piece, you're a manufacturer. The below article below states 4x margins. To go above that you would need to prove you're either low risk (valuable patents, brand names) or very high profit margin. The other piece is are you or other people in the company taking a salary or living off stock options/distributions? Most investors want to see the company able to stand on its own with everyone taking a salary. They may add in the cost of a person doing those jobs and look at the margins then. For a larger investor they might look at convertible debt to protect the investment. If you're not trying to raise a huge amount then I would go for smaller Mom and Pop people like you said. The coolness factor should be enough if you give them an good deal.
  16. “According to an article in a 1931 railway trade magazine, three days were required to unload a boxcar containing 13,000 cases of unpalletized canned goods. When the same amount of goods was loaded into the boxcar on pallets or skids, the identical task took only four hours.” Pallets were the biggest efficiency gain in the 20th century, even more so than computers.
  17. To step back a bit, have your tried your producing your product on this type of still? If so then it's all good, but if not you might need to put a bunch of work into redoing your mash bills & production processes to achieve the same flavor profile are currently producing. If you're new probably not a huge deal, but if you have existing product the flavor is going to change. It looks from the website that any changes to the still are going to need to be DIY. They don't seem to offer steam/oil coils or electric Tri-clamp heaters as an option. If you want a turn key solution than I don't think this is the one if you want something other than direct heat.
  18. If you think an exchange is iffy then get two gift certificates for him. One is for his time to come to your location. It’s his time, and if you were him you would probably appreciate getting something for your time. Get a second one for the cost + tax of the bottle in the store plus a little more. Be as nice as possible (as long as he is also). Before you get to the bottle in question give him the tour of the place (if he wants to), let him see the work that goes into each bottle, and do all the tastings he wants. This will build sympathy and should reduce any negative reviews he posts. Scenario 1: Bottle is fine, but customer doesn’t like the taste Once you’re done with the tour you check the bottle. If it’s fine then give him the “thanks for your time” gift cert. Try to explain as nicely as possible that your product is as it supposed to be, but unfortunately it’s not his style. You could also recommend other versions of your products if he likes them better. Scenario 2: Bottle is fine, go overboard with customer service Same as above but give him both gift certs just as way to push him to not be overly negative in his review if he does any. Scenario 3: Bottle is bad Give him both certs, tell him it unfortunately does happen. Scenario 4: Just give him $$$ Buy one bigger gift certificate and give it to him when he shows up. Don’t bother with the bottle until after he leaves. Do the tour tasting etc. Just be uber nice. Kind of like #2, but it removes any possibility of a confrontation. You will not be able to do this for everyone that doesn’t like your product. But if you treat him well hopefully he will tell his friends that you were very nice and maybe win over some other new customers. This may be a way of getting something positive out of a not so great situation.
  19. whiskey

    If the water was colder and you don't chill filter that's probably it. Cloudiness will occur at under ~46% ABV with colder water. If that's not it then I don't know.
  20. Start here, he explains it well:
  21. I got this yesterday so I haven't read it fully. It's a coffee table size book. Posting this as it would be good for a beginner as it has a lot of scientific info in it - chemical reactions, alcohol production and byproducts, aging, etc. Not thorough enough to to build your career off of but cool enough to have to show people. A lot of nice large photos in it to ogle.
  22. Hi all! I have been lurking here for a while. Figured I would sign up formerly and say thanks for all the info I have learned to date. It's been really instructive at realizing how much more I need to think about before I jump in. I'm interested in starting a distillery in the next couple years. I've volunteered at several local ones and have loved it. I've done homebrewing before. I'm also building a nice library of books on the subject. I work at a large manufacturing company during the day. I'm big into Lean and Six Sigma methodologies. I may not be able to help anyone with brewing/distilling advice but I can definitely help out with process change and improvements. Seriously - If you haven't read up on Lean it's incredibly good at helping companies do more in less time. If you aren't familiar with Lean this series of videos does a great job of explaining and showing it in action: (I have no affiliation with the company, just appreciate the videos) Again, thanks everyone. I hope that I can provide help and value back to you guys as you have already provided me!
  23. Act 39 really helps out the craft people, I think it will hopefully spark the industry. Did you see this? I don't think it will happen but if it does that would be a huge deal. It probably would effectively kill off the state stores. It's at least a glimmer of hope I could get a better selection of Scotch and other liquors without having to go out of state.
  24. Think about it like this: - How much will it cost to make a gallon vs. buy a gallon vs RO costs per gallon (fixed vs variables [Filters]) ? - How much time will it take to make it vs. go buy water vs. RO production? (setup/production/cleaning) - Does it take away time from other productive activities? (Stolen from EBStauffer) - Can you sustain the activity - will this be short term or will you need/want to change plans in a few months? - Will this defer the some other large cost until when you might have more money? - Could this cause damage to the still? (Stolen from Eric) I don't know the answer but those would be the questions I would ask myself.
  25. Hi Jim - Thanks for the offer! I will take you up on it. I also think that all the local craft guys should have a open dialog. PA is becoming more open with their laws but a lot of more work needs to be done.