It has been amazing to see the brewhouse and tank farm take shape since it arrived last weekend. By last Sunday all vessels had been unloaded, raised and positioned on the brewery floors. Moving 3 and 4,000 lb. stainless tanks off of flat beds and raising them up for placement was tedious and often tense work, and I couldn't have done it without an awesome and experienced rigging crew. Nothing proved as daunting as the 12,000 lb. boiler that required a monster forklift and 3 hours of very slow and careful effort to move into the boiler room. That alone was worth a celebration party. I do still miss the ritual sampling of beer at the end of each of those work days. After that beautiful weekend weather, the cold that returned last Monday brought with it a work crew from B.C., Canada. Starting sharply at 7 every morning, Josh and Matt went to work unpacking an IKEA like kit of pipes, valves and pumps to piece the new brewhouse together. After a week with these two, I'm convinced Canadian lingo can't be over stereotyped, ay. While here, these two spent each evening out exploring all the top beer joints around town, and while they discovered many that impressed their thirst for quality beer, they found themselves drawn back at each night's end for another game of pool and fresh beer at their favorite local spot, Twains. By Friday when they left town, the brewhouse was assembled and ready for the rest of the installation which is underway now. Besides steam and glycol piping scheduled over the next few weeks, the framing of the packaging area and tasting room is progressing quickly. This previously empty warehouse is fast turning into a full scale production brewery. Standing amidst the new brewhouse vessels and towering stainless has been a surreal experience unlike any I can remember in my many years of work. To see a real life brewery smack in the middle of Decatur exhilarates me as a beer lover and homebrewer as much as it does as a new brewery owner. There is a lot still to accomplish if we are to ceremoniously remove the protective white film still covering the brew vessels and meet our maiden brew session in a month, but with the April arrival at Three Taverns of a special talent and with all hands on deck, I'm confident we can do it. Link over to facebook for new images from this past week. And as victorious as this week has felt for me, I'm reminded on this Palm Sunday morning how victory and celebration can suddenly turn to tragedy and despair. This reminder exhorts me not to put my confidence in the accomplishments of days past or presume upon the days ahead, but rather strive to find transcendent joy and contentment in experiences independent of my circumstances, good or bad. And the promise of Easter Sunday in a week strengthens me to know with certainty, that even the darkest of tragedies has a promised fairy tale ending. I'll raise my glass to that! Cheers from the brewery.