Grandview’s Four String Brewery, which opened early this year, is an already well-established operation that presents a good business model for any startup brewery to follow. Four String’s beers are served in bars all over the city. The Brass Knuckle APA and Backstage Blonde Belgian varieties are popular among local craft drinkers thanks to their bold flavor and easy drinkability.
While the beers’ quality is crucial, owner and head brewer Dan Cochran also knew making the right decisions early on would be beneficial down the road. He began brewing in October and built up a stockpile before approaching potential clients. A steady supply was imperative, he said.
Cochran also was able to save time and money by purchasing some recycled equipment. He bought three seven-barrel Grundy tanks from England, and he repurposed a dairy processing tank into a brew kettle, a milk cooler into a mash tun and a tank from Marzetti into a bright tank.
“Everything here has its own story. This equipment is from all over the world,” Cochran said.
The new 30-barrel fermenter on its way will increase production by a third. Cochran currently employs a full-time assistant brewer so he can focus on handling account services and planning future development.
Cochran is finalizing the recipe for a new beer that Four String will roll out this fall. There are also plans to start putting the beer in cans — a trend among craft breweries of all sizes — for retail sales in the near future.
Four String’s strong presence in the local beer scene means Cochran welcomes the other new breweries. He feels they can all be successful and he’s looking forward to trying their brews.
“I’m really excited for the new breweries to enter the market. It’s a really good time to be a beer drinker in Columbus,” he said.