What the hop is UBREW?
We’ve been completely overwhelmed by the number of people who have signed up to our waiting list for Bermondsey.
Most people have been super stoked by the chance to join their own Open brewery — where you get to brew your own beer — but occasionally, we’ve had the odd question from people on our waiting list who have had their hopheads buried for the past eighteen months.
So we thought we’d help you out. But first, one from the vaults — our original Crowdfunder video. Still one of the best ways to get our super simple concept.
But how does the membership work?
Primarily we work on a membership model — like a gym, but you get less healthy.
Memberships are shared by up to five people and we will also include a 50% discount on one of our All-Grain brewing courses for each of your brew squadron.
The first ten memberships sold will be £90 per month, the second will be £95 a month, and the third £100 a month.
Ok but how does this work in practice?
Each membership has access to one fermenter which is stored in our Bermondsey site. Members then use the online system to book a timeslot in advance on the commercial brewery standard equipment including your hot liquor tank, mash tun, kettle and plate chiller (all of which will be used to fill your fermenter with delicious, glorious beer!). Members get access to the kit included in their membership fee, and we provide a brewshop where they can buy their ingredients onsite.
What about the quality of the beer?
We all know and have fond memories of the boil in a bag homebrew kits from the ’80s — exploding in garages or nearly poisoning our parents. But it doesn’t have to be like that. We’ve had hundreds of happy brewers in our brewery who have walked away with high quality craft beer in the last year -with our equipment and guidance, you’ll be brewing better stuff than your Grandad ever dreamt of.
Good brewing is primarily about cleanliness and great kit. Stainless steel helps a lot, fresh ingredients are also key.
How does the five person membership work?
Brewing is like drinking — best enjoyed with friends. Your membership can therefore be shared with up to four of your friends, meaning you split the cost, beer and fun up to five ways. Of course, you could have the membership all to yourself, or share it with just one friend, or whatever you like.
Our advice is to sign up, then ask friends if they’d like to join you. We know from experience that this is the best way to get a brew on.
Brew Courses — what do I get for my money?
You get to learn how to brew beer. What more could you ask for? Well there’ll also be delicious beers on arrival, special beer tastings throughout and attendees will be able to take home around a dozen professional standard, craft beers.
The cost of ingredients, renting the space/equipment and providing an expert brewer are all included in the price. For a cheeky 20% off your brew course, simply click here and type in UBREW20 and away you go!
How easy is it to brew for the first time?
It’s fairly easy to learn the basics in the first session. Our brewery assistants will be on hand to show you the ropes, and once you know how to brew you’ll find it’s like riding a bike.
What really stands UBREW out is our community. What we’ve already seen from our first 18 months, is that expert brewers come together and show brewing novices the ropes — in a really nice, careful and respectful way. In this respect our Community defines us as a business.
How long does it take to brew beer?
The brewing process takes anywhere between 3–6hrs (depending whether you go for ‘Extract’ or ‘All-grain’ ) and the fermenting time takes around 10 to 12 days (depending on the type of beer you are brewing). On average, each membership should be able to brew 70–150 bottles of 330l beer a month. If you’re not familiar with brewing you might want to read this old blog which covers off some of the basics.
What is the cost for bottles and kegs?
We’ll provide the facilities needed to bottle and keg, and we’ll have bottles and kegs for sale on site. We’ll striving to provide the best value for money possible, and if you want to use your own bottles, you’re still more then welcome to use our equipment! On average, you should be able to produce a decent beer for around 90p per bottle (including all ingredients, bottles and membership).
What types of hops and malts will be available?
We can’t always guarantee specific hops — due to seasonal elements and worldwide shortages — but we aim to provide the best quality out there and offer suitable alternatives. If you need something specific, we can normally get it in for you. The whole point of UBREW is to make brewing about brewing, not dodging bad products or playing russian roulette with the postman.
We also have existing and strong relationships with suppliers than home brewers would have the luxury of, meaning you reap the benefits of being a major purchaser before you’re buying the bulk normally required. Of course, you can source your own malt and hops, but we’re guessing you’d rather go through us.
How do I sign up?
We’ll be re-opening memberships very soon. Get your mates together and make sure you are on the waiting list at weareubrew.com — and watch out for more news very soon.
Matt and Wilf