Interview with David Bryan, owner/brewer New American Brewing; Ankeny, IA
April 23, 2014
tags: Ankeny, IA craft beer, iabeerbaron, iowa craft beer, New American Brewing
Another newer brewery in Iowa is New American Brewing located in Ankeny Iowa. Brewer/owner David Bryan was kind enough to take time out from his schedule to answer a few questions about his brewery and his beer. To find out more about New American Brewing visit their website at: www.newamericanbeer.com.
Q: What was your story before opening New American? How did you get involved in brewing?
I have been in the telecommunications business for the better part of a decade both here in Iowa and in Kansas. My wife is from the Des Moines area so we moved here to be closer to family. I had been brewing beer at home for about 7 years and became very passionate about the process. One of the best parts of brewing for me was always getting to share my beer with other people. I began thinking of turning pro several years ago and really started to research what it would take to make it happen. During this research and planning phase I met my business partner and we began planning our brewery together. After almost a year of finding funding, shopping for equipment, leasing a space, and building the brewery we sold our first keg in Nov of 2013.
Q: Do you feel any pressure to follow beer trends and brew what’s popular?
No, I don’t feel any pressure to follow trends. I have always brewed the beer that I like to drink and if I couldn’t brew what I like to drink, I don’t think if would have nearly as much fun. I started the brewery to pursue my passion for creating great beer, not to do what other people expected me to do.
Q: How many beers will be available at the brewery? Any plans for seasonals or special releases?
Right now we don’t have any beer available at the brewery, we are draft distribution only. Currently we have 2 core beers that we will offer year round. Independence Pale Ale and 1789 Porter. We are going to rotate our IPA seasonally. For the spring we have Shenanigans Session IPA. As we move through the year we will offer a Double IPA, and Black IPA, possibly a brown or red IPA for the fall. We also have a winter only beer called Elves’ Revenge, a 9% winter warmer spiced with Vanilla, Cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves.
Q: What is the beer that you are most excited about?
I’m really excited about changing up our IPA seasonally. It give me a chance to brew different beers throughout the year and not get bored. I love hoppy beers and I really like brewing and experimenting with different techniques. Changing our IPA offering gives me a chance to do this and keeps a fresh new beer in the marketplace throughout the year.
Q: Was opening a brewery in Des Moines area pretty easy? Was their any resistance?
No, opening a brewery was not easy. It was very challenging and stressful with long hours and lots of work. With that being said, Iowa is a great place to open a brewery. Iowa has a lot of things going for it, like self distribution, reasonable tax codes, alcohol laws that are fairly progressive, and most importantly the people of Iowa have received new breweries with open arms and are very excited to support local businesses. There are still a few laws and that breweries would like updated and made better, but overall Iowa is a great place to be a brewer.
Q: Can you discuss short term/long term goals for the brewery?
Short term we are looking to add growlers to the brewery. We would like people to be able to come to the brewery, try our beer, see what we are all about and be able to take beer home with them to enjoy.
Long term we are looking to add a full tasting room with some type of outdoor space and expand our current brewing capacity. That would mean that we would buy a larger brew house and increase our fermentation space. Right now both my business partner and I still have full time jobs outside of the brewery, in the future we are looking to be working at the brewery full time.
**Beer not available at the brewery yet but you can New American Beers at the following locations:
~el Bait Shop
~University Library Cafe
~Confluence Brewing Co.
~515 Brewing Co.
~Louie’s Wine Dive
~On The Rocks
~Praire Trail Hy-Vee
~The Keg Stand
~Dublin Bay Pub & Grill
~Number 7 Brewing Co.
~Thunderhead Sports Bar & Grill
from → Beer, Restaurants/Bars/Pubs