Yellow Pages |   News Updates |   Events Calendar |   Movie Times | Recycling
Rocklin & Roseville Today Local Events
HOME

Hops and Dreams: The Story of Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.



sierra_nevada_brewing.jpg

On November 15, thirty years ago, two friends mixed 300 pounds of pale malt and roasted barley, then added six pounds of hops. A week later they pried open their bottles of beer and poured it all down the drain—it had an unwelcome astringent taste. Ten batches later, after seeking advice internationally and experimenting, Ken Grossman and Paul Camusi created their first marketable batch of Sierra Nevada Pale Ale.

Today, the brewery they grew is producing more beer than any other craft brewery in the United States (The Boston Beer Company produces more but it contracts out some of its brewing).

Sierra Nevada Brewing Co., located in Chico, California, is holding a nationwide toast to celebrate its anniversary. Grossman, who bought out his partner, is sole owner of the company. The rise to this company’s and Grossman’s success is described in Hops and Dreams: The Story of Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. (Stansbury Publishing, $19.95, 224 pp.).

Ken Grossman and Paul Camusi moved to Chico from separate hometowns in Southern California. Introduced at Grossman’s Chico Home Brew Shop, which sold ingredients for homebrewing, the two decided to open their own microbrewery, just as the Bay Area
microbrewery pioneers had done recently.

Grossman is an innovative mechanic. He and Camusi scrounged for used equipment from dairies, scap yards, and bottlers, then Grossman rebuilt it into usable machinery. They took their small savings, received some money from relatives and a friend,and started producing. Their plan was to be selling 1,500 cases a month.

Author Rob Burton tells how they made their first sales, got picked up by a supermarket chain,received publicity, and began to develop a cult-like following of beer aficionados.

The company moved from its original rented warehouse to a building developed from the ground up; influenced in appearance by the defunct German Aschaffenburg brauerie from which they purchased two large copper vessels to adorn their new entrance.

Since then, Grossman has added a building to bring the brewery’s capacity to 800,000 barrels per annum. To power the brewery, 10,000 solar arrarys cover its rooftops and parking lot, outputting 1.5 megawatts of electricity plus four hydrogen fuel cells producing 1 megawatt - enough for 2,500 families for a year. The brewery processes spent cooking oil from its restaurant into biodiesel fuel for use in delivery trucks. The company strives for 100 percent sustainability. It recycles its waste and uses it for production, growing hops, and a garden.

Employees receive many perks including a profit sharing retirement program, a self-funded group health plan subsidized over 80 percent by the company, an on-site medical clinic and wellness program with free access six days a week, a child care center, and subsidized public transportation.

Hops and Dreams author Rob Burton compares U.S. craft beer to his native England’s, discusses the craft beer movement in the U.S., and laces the book with tales from Sierra Nevada’s Taproom. For those visiting the brewery he describes its tours and the 350-seat Big Room where national artists perform for the community on a high-tech stage set up for broadcasting. Chef Micheal Iles offers his pairings of favorite beers with menu choices and Brewmaster Steve Dresler narrates the history behind the company’s best-known beers. Hops and Dreams is the only book written about Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

 

Title: Hops and Dreams: The Story of Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
Author: Rob Burton

Availability: Available now from BN.com and Amazon.com. After November 10 available
through all bookstores, library jobbers, and the publisher.





Placer County News Headlines

Ford Focus continues to offer great valueRoseville, CA- Although this may not be the most identifiable car in the Ford stable of vehicles, the Focus has given the venerable American automaker plenty of notoriety

Gas Prices Steady Heading Into Summer Travel MonthsRoseville, CA- Gas prices in Roseville are holding steady again heading into the busy summer travel months

California Fires Update Summary (6.27.16)Over 5,200 firefighters are battling 9 large wildfires in California. Yesterday's high temperatures combined with the low humidity led to an increase in wildfire conditions

Keep Your Pets Safe in the Hot Summer MonthsRoseville, CA - Summertime means fun in the sun, especially with your furry, four-legged friends. Unfortunately, the warmer weather

Roseville Weekly Crime Report Digest (6.26.16)Weekly Roseville crime report digest update for the period covering 17-24, 2016.

$18 Million in Contracts to Assist Placer County's Most VulnerableThe Placer County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday approved nine different contract agreements totaling more than $18 million to provide mental health, substance abuse, transitional housing and child abuse prevention services

Special Needs Dog Looking for a Special HomeRoseville, CA - Bentley, a five year old Dachshund/Wire Haired Terrier, arrived at the Placer SPCA in May without use of his hind legs

California Fires Update Summary (6.26.16)Over 4,900 firefighters are battling 7 large wildfires in California. Last night Red Flag Warnings due to gusty winds and low humidity in many areas of California

Nurse Practitioner Advises on StrokeAccording to the National Institutes of Health, about 800,000 Americans each year experience a stroke, and those strokes "cause more serious long-term disabilities than any other disease."

Loomis and Meadow Vista Libraries to Close DownAUBURN, Calif. -- The Placer County Board of Supervisors this past week approved the closure of the Loomis and Meadow Vista libraries

Transportation Sales Tax Closer to Ballot MeasureThe Placer County Transportation Planning Agency (PCTPA) Board of Directors, acting as the Placer County Local Transportation Authority, unanimously adopted the Keep Placer Moving Transportation Investment Plan

Beach House Restaurant in Pacific GrovePacific Grove, CA- Gazing upon the ebb and flow of the cool, clear Pacific waters as they lap against the shore of Monterey Bay as the sun gently descends toward the horizon is a damn fine way


NEWS: In Case You Missed It