Omnivore - Three things Monday Night Brewing learned in three years
Monday Night Brewing's third anniversary is this Saturday
From 5-10:30 p.m. on Saturday, Monday Night Brewing will celebrate three years of business. Tickets range from $10-$60/person, and include live music, shuffleboard, beer cocktails, Bone Lick BBQ, an exclusive anniversary beer (a three-malt, three-hop Rye Saison), and a cask ale tent featuring popsicles, pepperoni, and other out of the ordinary ingredients. A portion of the ticket proceeds will benefit Ties That Matter, a nonprofit dedicated to helping Haitian women.
While the young-but-quickly-growing brewery has only been making beer at its Westside Atlanta location just off Howell Mill Road for about a year and half now, they launched into the Atlanta market (while contract brewing through South Carolina's Thomas Creek Brewery) in 2011, and their roots reach as far back as 2006 in co-founder Jeff Heck's garage. (Incidentally, MNB was the subject of one of this publication's very first First Drafts as well.)
In advance of the celebration, Heck and his co-founders Jonathan Baker and Joel Iverson took turns telling Creative Loafing a few things they've learned in a few years.
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Jonathan Baker, Marketing Guy and Master of Mind Control
It isn't necessarily a bad idea to go into business with friends.
Everyone told us it was going to ruin our friendship, but here we are, three years in, and we are stronger friends than ever. I think one thing that has made a difference is how different all of us are. We all have very different skill sets and personalities, so we are forced to respect each other's expertise in a given area, whether that's how to handle our Facebook page, how to put together the brew schedule, or negotiating with banks.
Joel Iverson, Operations Guy and Taste-testing Ninja
You won't make it without passion.
Starting a business is brutal, and the beer industry is particularly tough, with really high expenses but very low margins (especially in Georgia). We've had some rough days where you're just putting out fires or dealing with the government, and it's easy to question why we got into this business in the first place. For me, the payoff comes in the form of seeing and interacting with customers. Either at the brewery or out at restaurants, it makes it all worth it when you see someone genuinely loving the product you created.
Jeff Heck, CEO Guy and Supreme Beer Chancellor
People are everything.
Whether it's our employees, investors, families, distributors, retailers, or customers, everything starts and ends with partnering with the right people. At every step along the way, we have depended heavily on the experience, hard work, and integrity of other people. We feel like we are not just a brewery started by three friends, but a brewery started by a community of terrific people.