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Selkirk Abbey Brewing Company: The Birth of a Brewery.

My friends Jeff Whitman and Rob Wallace invited me up for a little get together they had at their awesome mancave a couple weeks back.  These guys love good beer!  And they are taking their love to the next level.  The mancave was designed to be a brewery with a members only club in the back.  They didn’t have the money to set up the brewery so they set up the mancave club and used it as their personal hangout.  It was a great place with tables and stools, a poker table, a flat screen HDTV, a Kegerator and cushy couches.  It also had shelves that stocked a most impressive collection of rare beers and single malt scotches.  Their idea was that once they got the brewery up and running they would serve their beer in the club and bottle and sell the rest.  Great plan, right?…WRONG!

This is one of those “Best Laid Plans…”  See the owner of the business park where they were located changed his mind and didn’t want them to sell beer on site.  Well that really put a damper on their plans, so they were on the hunt for a new location.  They found it only 1/2 mile from the existing place and it was perfect!  Good water, and plenty of it, bigger space, and the potential to have a kick in the pants tap room when it all gets put together.

Only one problem remained.  They had to get all the brewing equipment to the new place…

Enter the movers!

It is a good thing that both Rob and Jeff are good buddies with Fred Colby from Laughing Dog Brewing up in Sandpoint, Idaho.  See Fred within the last few months moved his brewing operation about the same distance, and has a crew of experienced guys that could take the brewery for the short ride to the new location.

So after a day’s hard work, after the celebration party the night before, all the parts and pieces were moved over to the new location.  A few days later it was set up and here is what it looks like now.


Obviously there is still a lot to do.  There needs to be about a mile of tubing installed between the tanks, and a French drain needs to be cut in the floor, floor treatments need to go down, as well as a number of other steps to get the brewery ready to produce.  Not the least of which is getting all the needed permits to begin commercially brewing.  When all is in operation at full capacity this brewery will be capable of producing about 1200 barrels a year.  Oh, and I forgot to mention this will be an all Belgian Brewery.  That’s right, an Idaho first, and quite frankly a rarity in the US as far as breweries go, and we will have it here in our state!  Good luck Jeff and Rob.  Hopefully you can quit your day jobs and unleash that Monastic Spirit!  Idaho will be all the better for it!

-Don

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16 Comments on “Selkirk Abbey Brewing Company: The Birth of a Brewery.”

  1. June 14, 2011 at 11:07 am #

    By “unleash that Monastic Spirit!” do you mean you want them to stop talking and be celibate? Because that sounds like a bummer, Don. 😦

    • Don
      June 14, 2011 at 11:13 am #

      Whatever it takes to brew good beer, Jim! It’s called making sacrifices for your craft!

  2. Jeff W
    June 14, 2011 at 11:27 am #

    Thanks , Don. Each day we’re a step closer. The Fermenters got some TLC this past weekend, the Brite tanks will get some love this coming one. The security system is in… Phone and internet are up… Paperwork for the evil fed is nearly complete…

    We’ll be rolling soon-ish, brother, soon-ish

    Jeff

    • Don
      June 14, 2011 at 11:52 am #

      Sounds great Jeff! I want one of your first production bottles for review!

  3. June 14, 2011 at 12:02 pm #

    Very cool! Congrats

  4. Dave
    June 14, 2011 at 2:56 pm #

    Congrats, always happy to see a new brewery in the works, even if it is in Utah.

    Don, on an unrelated note, whatever happened with the Rocket Dog beer label submissions for your friend at Laughing Dog?

    Keep up the good work…

    • Don
      June 14, 2011 at 3:58 pm #

      Idaho, Dave. Anyway, Fred is still hemming and hawing about the submittals. If there is any movement I’ll let you know. I should be seeing Fred next month. I’ll try to pin him down at that point.

      • Dave
        June 14, 2011 at 4:01 pm #

        Oops, sorry. Idaho. Utah. I have to stop drinking at work…

  5. June 15, 2011 at 8:10 am #

    Exciting news for all the beer drinkers in Idaho! Hopefully I’ll get to try some of their stuff once they get up and going.

    • Don
      June 15, 2011 at 8:36 am #

      You might Beau. Their plan is to distribute broadly. So there may be some headed east once they begin production.

  6. Bill Knotts
    April 13, 2012 at 11:58 pm #

    Good luck boys, will be by asap.

  7. Dave Haralson
    June 27, 2012 at 8:08 pm #

    My wife just came home from work with a flier about a new brewery’s grand opening here in Post Falls this Saturday. My heart fluttered when I saw the Belgian reference in the name. I immediately got on line hunting for anything about it. I found a beautiful homepage verifying it’s reality but said ‘coming soon.’ I had to find out more so I did another Google search and found this link. As I read my heart practically stopped when I read “this will be an all Belgian Brewery.” I fell down and wept.

    When you guys arrive early Saturday and find a tent set up, don’t be alarmed it’s only me; just put a broom in my hand and point. I’ll make myself useful.

    Dave Haralson

    • Rob
      June 28, 2012 at 6:37 pm #

      Looking forward to seeing you at the Abbey, Dave! We’ll be pouring four of our own beers, with varying levels of Belgian-ness. The White is very mild and more of an introductory Belgian. The Pale, IPA, and Saison get increasingly Belgian in that order.

  8. Dave Haralson
    June 29, 2012 at 12:16 pm #

    cool, I’m happy for you guys with all this. Get-r-done!

  9. Dave Haralson
    June 30, 2012 at 11:15 pm #

    I had a great time at the Grand Opening today. Good turn-out and great beers. I’m looking forward to my next visit(s).

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