Anyone who has ever built a brewery knows designing the layout is a fine art that takes real skill and experience. It’s a delicate balance between maximising the space to fit as much as you possibly can while optimising the design for a smooth brewing process.
Getting the brewery layout right in the early stages of the project is the key to success. So how do you make sure it is just right?
Your brewery layout – getting started
Ask yourself three questions at the very beginning of the project.
- What is the size of my location?
- What are my monthly and annual production goals?
- What is my budget?
Your answers to these questions provide a guide for your designer to design a brewing system that meets your needs.
They are used to calculate all the important things like the recommended brewhouse and cellar vessel sizing, cost of equipment and floor space.
Working the brewery equipment into the space
With all this fun data under their belts, it’s time to move into the serious part – a giant game of Tetris.
Who doesn’t love a good Tetris session?
Your designers first step is to get a 2D CAD drawing of the space from either the designer/architect or landlord. This drawing is an important piece of the puzzle! If they are working off an inaccurate drawing, it can lead to serious – and costly – problems down the track.
During this phase it’s important to identify the dimensions of each piece of equipment as well as both their dry and wet weights.
An important note: share this information with all the stakeholders involved in your project. This is the first major gate check to ensure the space will fit the planned equipment and handle the load – as the weight adds up quickly!
This includes all auxiliary equipment such as steam boilers, glycol chillers, water filters, packaging equipment, etc.
Underestimating weight can lead to foundation cracking. You’ll also need to factor in trench drainage, which can take away the structural integrity of the slab if there’s too much weight and decrease height clearances if the need to add to the slab.
And here’s the big one – the dimensions of the equipment and the location need to be spot on. We’re not saying this to be fussy! We are saying this because if they are off, by even one millimeter, you could have a serious problem on your hands.
Worst case scenario – you get to unloading day and a piece of equipment doesn’t fit into the space. Uh oh! This means the entire design is thrown off, and can lead to a domino effect of issues.
Sharpen those pencils
Once your designer has worked out what equipment you’ll need and how much can be fitted into the space, the drawing starts.
Your designer will create a series of diagrams that directly represent your brewery layout – exactly as it will appear in real life. As the project progresses, they should continue to reference these drawings – they are their benchmark.
At Bespoke Brewing Solutions, when we design your brewery layout, we have the following things in mind:
- The process path – we design a layout which flows with the brewing process, to avoid redundant tasks and movements.
- Utilities – we make sure to take things like piping routing and power outlets into consideration in our brewery layout design.
- Room to expand – by planning for additional space ahead of time, you will save costs of having to redesign the equipment layout down the track. You can also plan on utility routing and include the initial build out.
- General logic – this may seem silly. Isn’t logic a given? Well, you’d be surprised at some of the blunders we have seen over the years! We ask the important questions, like what would be the best location for the glycol inlets and outlets for a FV or BBT? We ensure there is space to get your pallet through, your brite tank is near the cold room and the lauter tun is close to the door so you can easily bring malt out and kegs in. Sometimes it’s the simple things that have a lasting effect.
We understand how important it is for everyone to be on the same page. Between us, your brewer, designer/architect, structural engineer and contractor – there’s a lot of chefs in the kitchen.
We get this. We are experts at managing these relationships – just ask our clients! https://www.bespokebrewingsolutions.com/brewery-projects
When you work with us you have access to a consulting service, along with the highest quality equipment.
When you’ve been doing this for as long as we have, in over 12 different countries, we know what to look for. We know how things should flow and the best practice for your brewery layout.
We can preemptively identify where the roadblocks might pop up, so we can solve the issue before it arises.
If you’d like to work with us on your project, get in touch. https://www.bespokebrewingsolutions.com