Thanks to the addition of five custom-built fermenters, Motorworks Brewing is about to start making a lot more beer.
A whole lot more.
After securing its order for three 150-barrel fermenters and a pair of 30-barrel fermenters, Motorworks will double its production capacity. The brewery also added another bright tank, which is where beer goes to be carbonated.
On Friday, a crane sat outside, lifting each fermenter and setting them down in the brewery through holes in the roof. The larger 150-barrel fermenters were custom-made to properly fit into the building’s nooks and crannies.
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For reference, a 150-barrel fermenter holds about 5,000 gallons of beer, while a 30-barrel holds about 1,000 gallons. Barry Elwonger, Motorworks’ director of sales and marketing, said that the new additions will allow the company to produce about 14,000 barrels of beer annually.
That math comes out to almost 470,000 gallons of beer a year. Elwonger said that this benefits their distribution plans and will allow the company to start shipping beer throughout northern and southern Florida.
“We cut out space for these big 150-barrel fermenters back when we opened in 2014 because we knew we would need them eventually,” said Elwonger.
The smaller fermenters will also allow Motorworks to ramp up its small-batch seasonal offerings and potentially offer those up for distribution.
Owners Frank and Denise Tschida started out with a vision to grow while remaining true to the history of the building, Elwonger said. The brewery’s building at 1014 Ninth St. W., Bradenton, used to serve as a Chevrolet dealership in 1923 and then a Hudson dealership in the ‘40s.
“The place is kind of rooted in being a car dealership. Frank used to build sprint cars in his youth,” Elwonger said.
That’s part of where the Motorworks name comes from, he added. In fact, that hand-on spirit still lives on.
“We pride ourselves on being beerheads and gearheads. We actually built much of our facility and did a lot of our own piping,” Elwonger said.
That, the spacious venue — a 3,500 square-foot bar and 13,000 square-foot beer garden — and huge beer selection are what make Motorworks Brewing stand out.
“We’re a very diverse brewery in the types of different beers that we offer,” Elwonger said. “We brew everything from light lagers to double IPAs, triple IPAs, stouts, lagers and everything in between.”
The brewery’s core lineup includes V Twin Vienna Lager, Intellectual Property Ale IPA, Midnight Espresso Coffee Porter, Pulp Friction Grapefruit IPA and Rollcage Red Ale.
Motorworks typically keeps 30 beers on draft. The brewery also has a full liquor license and offers a variety of wines.