To say it’s been a big year is an understatement. It feels like just yesterday we were sitting down reflecting on 2015 drafting up a little blog entry to say cheers to everyone who helped make our first year such a success. This year has been even crazier and the list of awesomeness is too long to mention it all, so bear with us while we try and sum up 2016 in a blog…
Our business has grown, and grown quickly. Back in January we had two brewers handling everything from milling in, to carbonating the BBT. Now we have six full time brewery staff with a packaging team of four. In January nine fermenters seemed like a big deal. There are 19 now and more arriving in the first quarter of next year. A second canning line, some new real estate and the establishment of our own distribution company Pirate Cartel means that we can pack a heap more tinnies each week and they find their way to the drinker with ease.
Plenty of frequent flier miles have been racked up over 2016. We have criss-crossed the country and the globe in search of beer festivals, beer competitions, beer conferences, tap takeovers, music festivals, new technology and new customers. Along the way we have had a bloody good time, learnt a shit load, met hundreds of good people and taken Pirate Life’s humble brews to three new continents.
There have been plenty of epic festivals here at home. The highlights which include Melbourne’s Good Beer Week, GABS and Adelaide’s own Beer and Barbecue Festival. To any of the crew who we have run into at a beer festival around the country a big cheers, without you coming along to support Aussie Craft Beer we would be without a job. It’s one of the greatest pleasures as brewers, to be able to share a drink and a bit of banter with someone who loves their beer. We will be back at them all next year doing the same thing. So see you there.
Accolades aren’t what we got into brewing for but it is pretty damn cool to find out that people dig our beers. We have been lucky enough to take home a couple of nice trophies this year and it’s an honour to have our peers recognise our hard work. But for us here at Pirate Life the big one was back in January when we took out spots 3, 4 and 11 in the GABS Hottest 100 Australian Craft Beers Countdown. We have always made beer we love to drink and beers that we hope others will enjoy so it was awesome to find out that after one short year the Aussie Craft Beer community had embraced our ales with such enthusiasm.
If you come here often enough you know that the brewery changes every week. There is always something happening at Pirate Life. As the crew here like to say “Never a dull moment.” We are always looking forward to the next thing but when we do look back we always end up saying the same thing: Thank you.
None of us here at Pirate Life could do any of this without the support we have from so many people. First and foremost our families and our friends, you lot have been there from day one and we cannot thank you enough for putting up with all the craziness that comes with this little brewery we are building. Secondly all of the businesses that help us do what we do. We are incredibly lucky to have such a great network of connections, both here in Australia and abroad. So thank you for all your help making our second year so much fun to be a part off.
And finally to anyone who has enjoyed one of our beers throughout the year. To all of you who love hops as much as we do here's a promise: We’ll cram as many of them in our beers next year as we can.
Have a safe and happy Christmas and a great new year.