Friday, January 2, 2009

So Ya Wanna Run a Pub...

So it's been a right long time since I've put metaphorical pen to paper and consigned a sequence of ones and zeros to a record in an SQL database in a server farm somewhere in Seattle. Maybe this is a good thing. It means I got to stop thinking and just do - the business of running a pub and brewery, that is.

It's customary, nay, even traditional, to do some sort of resolution at the beginning of the year, or perhaps sum up the nadirs and zeniths of the previous. I've chosen to simply ramble for a paragraph or two.

I have 30 minutes or so to drink up a nice pot of coffee down at the Trailhead Coffeehouse before I head to what is my new job. This still hasn't settled in on me yet, after being open for more than four months now. It's too early to call the business successful, and it's too late to go back, as I imagine myself a third of the way through a half gainer, poised in the ether over what I hope to be 10 feet of room temperature water and not a concrete and tile substrate. There is just an awful amount of work ahead, and yet the accomplishments of this last year seem to defy introspection. I think I need a few more hours off here and there; a few more walks along the river; a few more nights in somebody else's pub over a good book.

There is now a pub and brewery in Oakridge, unlikely as it still seems sometimes. I had thought about this project some eleven years ago, and here we are. And as the bottom of this coffee cup begins to contemplate exposure to the elements, the topics are beginning to pile up in my slowly decaying cortex.

- Our first beer festival is coming up, in which we will be attempting to introduce real ale and beer engines (and sparklers) to the revelers at the fairgrounds.

- We had a great visit from our sister pub in Cumbria.

- National Geographic Geo Tourism has chosen us for their kickoff party this month.

- The new menu.

- Pubs are closing in the UK; I'll have to go over there and do something about it.

- Cash flow, payroll, recessions, lions and tigers and bears (oh bother).

- Where to get hops from, and how to pay for them.

- Thoughts about craft brewing, and why the big regionals can't make a decent pint half the time.

- Thoughts about craft brewing, and why some of the smaller guys produce some extraordinary liquid refreshment.

Coffee's gone - time to go open a pub. Since we were closed for New Years, I know I will have to undergo the rigors of checking all six beer engines for quality.


The Woolpack Inn said...

Oh come on Ted, what could go wrong?

Brewers Union Local 180 said...

I thought of something last week but can't remember what it was.

Anonymous said...

Where does one stay in oakridge? We're coming down to check out your pub.

Brewers Union Local 180 said...

The closest motels are the Arbor Inn and the Oakridge Motel on Hwy 58. They are not more than a mile from the pub. There are a couple more on the other end of town, including a Best Western. Check out the directory at for a listing.