U Brew It

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wakkatoo

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Hey all, got a U Brew It opening in our area soon,
I used to live out your way, where are they talking about putting the U-brew-it??

Dunno if the situation has changed in the 2 years since I was there, but there is a real opportunity for someone to make a killing on owning and operating a decent homebrew store in the Albury Wodonga Region. All I remember was that coles had the best selection and the only hbs was also a pet store, with an emphasis on pets. One of the fermenters even had budgie shit in it :icon_vomit:

I got as far as crunching numbers and looking at potential sites. Then we transferred and that was the end of that <_<
 

dr K

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When the local Uberbrau opened here a number of us wandered along.
The facilities are immaculate, the process is as good as you could ever get from extract and far better than anyone of us at home could get from extract. They had two temp contolled coolrooms (lager and ale) and the beers, whilst a litlle boring were of excellent quality.
Had my LHBS (a kit brewer but a very good one) been able to make extract beers as good as Ubrews when I decided to seriously brew a decade ago I may have never moved to all grain.
K
 

matti

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They have got a brew-shed our way and the beer taste ok.

U-brew-it sounds similar.

The problem is the price. $120+ for 50L

U-"can"-brew 150-200L at home for the same price. :lol:
 

cdbrown

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Some friends and I have done U Brew It a few times now, between us about 14 batches I think. The only one that we weren't happy with was an undercarbed batch, still tatsted great though. Have done a few hoegaarden batches which have turned out great. The guys working there knew what they were doing as well.
 

Fatgodzilla

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I think you are rather generous - the ones I met knew the names of the beer on their price list and thats about it.

That's the problem with these franchises. The majority are bought by beer lovers but they are not brewers. I know of two franchisees who post on this site who I would have no problems recommending, because they are brewers who own a franchise, not franchisees you own a franchise. That said, it costs a lot of money to buy into one of these ($200-300k probably won't get you far) and to make a profit, you got to charge as they do. It is better they are there than not there, so whilst I wont patronise them, I recommend them to mates who don't brew but want something other than megaswill.


Dunno if the situation has changed in the 2 years since I was there, but there is a real opportunity for someone to make a killing on owning and operating a decent homebrew store in the Albury Wodonga Region
Lived in Wodonga late 80s / early 90s, there was a HB bloke at Albury. Got into it cos he lost his licence DUI and lost his job too. Was a good bloke, good shop, he was a good brewer. Had a few sessions there. Aparrently no one has stepped up to take his place. Pity. Anyone with a bit of money who wants a partner in a HB business, send me a PM and I'll organise a business plan ! :)
 

Swinging Beef

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We have two of these places in the local area.
I have been to open days at both and samples around 12 of their beers.
Two of my friends go there, and one makes his favorite XXXX beer , and the other makes a Porter.
Both beers taste like beers.
Not great, but the XXXX guys beer is definately better than XXXX.

Its nbot premium all grain stuff, but its good beer.
 

drsmurto

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I've tasted a few different U Brew products and frankly I brew much better. They use extract malts, warm fermentation (I don't think they brew at lager temps, but I'll accept admonishment if they do) using probably Mauri yeast and filter their beers. Its good enough for the market they attract but any genuine home brewer probably wouldn't bother. If you are a simple K & K brewer its not too bad as the beer should be better than what you can do at home (assuming the sanitation, constant temps and filter) but not much. You can't fiddle too much. The bloke running the setup bought a franchise to make beer, but I doubt he's a brewer, in the same way that the kid who makes burgers at McDonalds is not a chef.

Don't automatically deride the notion of these complexs, just remember that the market they cater for (almost exclusively) are not at this site. If out of their customers someone comes over to our side of brewing, all the better. I know that some posters here operate such franchises and they would support my comments here. The day they allow you to do extensive changes to the brew in terms of wort ingredients and yeasts and cool temperature control may see more homebrewers go across and use their facilities to brew rather than make a mess at home.

Edit : Don't listen to Q's complaint, I think it's a bit over the top. A poor beer is a poor beer, but to make you sick it must have been infected. If it was infected, you'd taste it and not drink it. It could just as easily been poor bottle cleanliness and some kind of food poisoning. I doubt Q's and his mates experience had much to do with the general output of these places.

Hazz, if interested, give it a try. The only way to correctly assess value and performance is to stick your money down and taste the end result.
Mate of mine recently went along and got an asahi clone.

Recipe was something along the lines of 5kg of liquid malt, glucose and dextrose. No steeped spec grains. I believe they waved a hop over the kettle.

It tastes as bad as ant kit brew i have ever tasted. Its not infected, its just shit.

This may just be due to the people running this store (southern burbs of adelaide) know nothing. My mate started asking them questions about the yeast, cold fermentation, lagering etc and the blokes response was ' you have an AG mate dont ya, these blokes think lagers have to be brewed cold, they dont know much about yeast'.

It was brewed at ale temps, no lagering, crash chilled and sterile filtered.

I shit you not, warm VB tastes better.

A little attention to detail goes along way IMO.

For all you Adelaideans, their beers are as good as the Lovely Valley Beverage company...... :icon_vomit:

I would happily brew AG beer and allow mates to pitch yeast for well under $150 per 50L. I love brewing almost as much as i like drinking my beer!
 

pcmfisher

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I called into the new ubrewit at Para Hills just after it opened.

Got the guided tour. Lovely sparkly new stainless and copper everywhere.

Way too expensive in my opinion. I was given a sample of a wheat beer and was very disappointed to say the least. Had easily as much home brew twang as my kit brews.
 

King Brown

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I have a few friends who swear by it, the bear they got was very drinkable but nothing that really wowed me. I thought it sounded too expensive, and less fun than brewing at home.
 

Cannibal Smurf

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Got a call from the guy at my local ubrewit yesterday, he told me he'd just moved my brew to the cool room because it took a little longer to reach FG than he expected. It's staying there until I get back from Sydney next week and I'll bottle it on Tuesday.
To be honest I was happily surprised to find out that he was checking the gravity, I'd assumed when he told me 3 weeks that they had a standard time they let it ferment for and left it at that.
He told me the OG 1.075 and FG 1.019. Beersmith tells me I'll be getting a 7.3% ABV beer that will last me long enough (i hope) to get some AG gear together.
Waiting to hear from Sully to get one of his SS pots, will stop at Spotlight on my way home and grab some voille and get a friend to sew me up a nice bag... Might even stop at Craftbrewer on the way home too.
 

bigholty

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Sounds like there is a lot of variation in the marketplace; from franchisees who don't know and don't care about making beer, to those who DO care and can churn out a reasonable beer. I reckon the biggest factor seems to be the person in control of the premises.

I'd like to see a B.O.P. with a big mash-tun and yeast farm out the back where they make their own fresh base worts and yeast starters every week. Customers could then tailor their brew in the individual kettles with some specialty grains and hops, possibly some extract to boost SG, then pitch the yeast of their choice and let the BOP take care of fermentation and conditioning. Anyone out there got a few hundred grand they want to contribute and we'll give it a crack?
 

reviled

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Got a call from the guy at my local ubrewit yesterday, he told me he'd just moved my brew to the cool room because it took a little longer to reach FG than he expected. It's staying there until I get back from Sydney next week and I'll bottle it on Tuesday.
To be honest I was happily surprised to find out that he was checking the gravity, I'd assumed when he told me 3 weeks that they had a standard time they let it ferment for and left it at that.
He told me the OG 1.075 and FG 1.019. Beersmith tells me I'll be getting a 7.3% ABV beer that will last me long enough (i hope) to get some AG gear together.
Waiting to hear from Sully to get one of his SS pots, will stop at Spotlight on my way home and grab some voille and get a friend to sew me up a nice bag... Might even stop at Craftbrewer on the way home too.
If you stop at Craftbrewer it will be all over, you wont be able to resist the power of the dark side :ph34r: :lol:
 

Bribie G

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If you stop at Craftbrewer it will be all over, you wont be able to resist the power of the dark side :ph34r: :lol:
Yup calling in next Wed. to collect my big order. Like a moth to a flame :excl:

Voile comes in 1500 ml width so I got 2000 length. Where do you live Smurfie? I'm currently getting a bag made by our local seamstress on Bribie - not sure how much she is going to charge me but she's embarassingly cheap when she takes up my new pants etc. When I get the bag and find out the damage$ I'll post in the BIAB thread because It's obviously the sort of thing she could do via the post.
 

Cannibal Smurf

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Where do you live Smurfie? I'm currently getting a bag made by our local seamstress on Bribie - not sure how much she is going to charge me but she's embarassingly cheap when she takes up my new pants etc. When I get the bag and find out the damage$ I'll post in the BIAB thread because It's obviously the sort of thing she could do via the post.
I'm on the Gold Coast. My brothers Mrs' is a seamstress so getting a bag made will cost me zip (maybe a couple of HB's) except for the cost of the voile, but post the info anyway.. add to the wealth of knowledge that is AHB, others may appreciate a rough idea of how much it should cost to get a bag sewn up.
 

daemon

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Even if the places are under the same franchise, the difference varies quite a bit between stores. While I've never actually used one, I've had a few beers that have been brewed from places like this and the results are usually ok.

The local one here uses extract brewing but do steep some grains for the "premium" brews. They have two coldrooms, one at 18c for ales and one at 10c for lagers / conditioning.

Costs are higher of course because with a homebrewing setup you already pay rent/mortgage on your brewing area, you don't need big coolrooms and don't need to pay wages / insurance etc. If you factored all those in I'm sure the figures wouldn't be too dissimilar. Essentially you're making the decision to pay someone else to own the brewing gear and to monitor it. The upside is the fact that all you need is the bottles, the downside is the fact that you pay for that upside.

It's still cheaper than commercial beer (and better in most cases) which is why the industry exists. It doesn't offer the same cost savings as brewing it yourself nor does it offer the flexibility. That was the key for me to go with homebrewing, I enjoy tinkering and didn't really focus on the cost savings (although they're certainly there!).
 

brettprevans

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I reallyt dont see why a homebrewer would even consider using any of these types of companyies. you can brew so much better at home yourself. even with K&K IMO. Not long ago there was a thread on AHB who worked for one of these mobs asking if it was possible to replicate their companies process at home. WTF? how can you work for a breewing company and not know if you can replicate it at home. it shows complete lack of understanding about what they do which mewans your going to get a shite product (most likely).

for all the companies out there that do this and o it well, gfood on you and I wish you success (as this is not a bash against these styles of companies).
 

Katherine

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I tried it once... and decided it was not for me...
The particular company I went to wins awards.....and do a cracker ginger beer.

The people I do know that use the establishment have no idea what grain, what extract or what hops were used. Its a means for them to get more beer (that there happy with) and maybe a social outlet! Does not suit us who brew at home. so why knock them!
 

Fatgodzilla

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I tried it once... and decided it was not for me...
The particular company I went to wins awards.....and do a cracker ginger beer.

The people I do know that use the establishment have no idea what grain, what extract or what hops were used. Its a means for them to get more beer (that there happy with) and maybe a social outlet! Does not suit us who brew at home. so why knock them!
Cheers KT - no point knocking a business simply cos you'll never use them. Recommend them to your friends (particularly those who look twice at your homebrew).
 

Langy

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Hey all, got a U Brew It opening in our area soon, just wondering what everyone thinks of it, those who have one anyway. Worth a look? Sounds too good to be true.

Hazz
Mate I currently use U Brew it and have for about 6 months now. So far I haven't got a bad word to say about them. All the beers I've tried in their range are similar to their original counterparts, but perhaps on the sweeter side.
 

Cannibal Smurf

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Good onya Langy :)

Someone actually answered the post based on actual experience, no illiterate bullsh!t hear-say or talking about a totally different company.

I am happy with the service I've received and will post my findings on the beer itself once I've had a chance to try it. I say give 'em a try Hazz, ask a few questions about the process and the beers you're interested in brewing and see how much your franchisee knows about his/her business.
 

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