World News – CA – Superflux Beer Company takes root in ‘Yeast Van’


This is a phrase Matt Kohlen and Adam Henderson have spread a lot over the past five to seven years

« It’s kind of a slogan that Matt and I have, » says Henderson « We’d say that in a goal-oriented, mean, sarcastic, funny and self-deprecating way »

When something good happened, they would look at each other and exclaim, “Hey! We should start a brewery « When something bad happened, well they would say it again then too

« But we can’t say that anymore because we finally did, » says Henderson, laughing

This summer, the co-founders of Superflux Beer Company opened a boutique in Vancouver’s “Yeast Van” Located at 505 Clark Dr, the opening of the brewery space was a source of pride for the couple after more than five years struggle to find the perfect space

Starting with a “little experiment” between two friends, they first set out in 2015 to try to make the beer they loved – India pale ale (IPA) “hop-forward” – and that they thought they would like to see more of

Initially, the duo made their breweries in other brewery setups, spending a year at Callister Brewing Company, a collaborative brewing space, followed by several stints at local spots Dogwood Brewing and the Strathcona Beer Company

« We basically functioned as a contract brewery, or some people call them gypsy breweries We went to different breweries and made our beer there because we didn’t have a physical location or a manufacturing license So that’s what we did, « says Henderson » It was absolutely out of necessity « 

Two common issues that many startups face in Vancouver have kept the company from moving into its own space: money and the availability of commercial real estate

“It was really difficult for us to find a suitable space for a brewery,” says Henderson “We had another space in the North Vancouver district. We were trying to go through the licensing process there, which was quite painful We finally left and came here which we are very happy « 

The brewery location has beer sales, Superflux products, and gourmet take-out hot dogs.The take-out bites were originally designed to offer a taste of what the tasting room, which has open this month, would offer beer lovers to dinner

A full kitchen was not possible in the space, so they created a menu that can be prepared in a « relatively simple kitchen », according to Henderson Chez Superflux, that means gourmet dogs and salads

“We wanted to make sure there was a quick and tasty food option for people to hang out with,” says Henderson “It gave us a kind of playful, fun way to put our imprint on a concept food « 

Initially working with their friend Graham Marceau from Corduroy Pie Company, they created a menu of hot dogs that are anything but fair trade The duo have since hired chef Justin Lee, formerly of the Crow Bar, to run the kitchen operations

« The way I have often described our hot dogs to people is that they are hot dogs, with a bunch of real food on top, » says Henderson « We don’t do ketchup and mustard We wanted to have a little more fun with it and put in lots of fresh and bright toppings « 

For example, the menu includes the Oscar ($ 12), a beefy dog ​​with a dry-aged beef sausage from Two Rivers Specialty Meats with oven-dried tomatoes, dressed rock crab, smoked paprika, chives, olive oil and a rich Béarnaise And Mortadella Sauce ($ 10), with a Premium Black Forest Bavarian hot dog, corn stew, mortadella, pistachio, Grana Padano cheese, olive oil and a lemon mayonnaise

“These are ingredients and little preparations that would exist in a real restaurant, where we sort of run a concession stand, in a way,” says Henderson “It’s safe to say these are hot -dogs « fancy » « 

The brewery offers two new beers each week, according to Henderson, as well as two regulars – Happyness, and Color and Shape A « variety of other options » is always in rotation

The business, says Henderson, is a passionate project for the two co-founders. They are also both, he admits, quite stubborn

« I would say that also plays a role, » says Henderson of the usefulness of this common trait when opening Superflux, despite several setbacks and delays « For me personally, I have reorganized my life to be around beer

« Our first one can work at the brewery, I think it’s been 11 years to the day since I quit a job I hated so I could finally own a brewery »

Between leaving his job and opening Superflux, Henderson set up another business, in which he is still involved, a beer agency that imports and exports beer to Western Canada.

« It’s basically a passion, a love and a hobby that we’ve become a bit obsessed with, » says Henderson

This aforementioned stubbornness may also have explained why the duo decided to move forward with their opening plans, even in the midst of a global pandemic.

« We were way too deep to change anything, » Henderson says of the timing « When the pandemic started, it was actually the day all the restaurants closed, all of our brewing equipment arrived at the brewery Normally this would be a day where you would celebrate and be very, very excited But it was a pretty bittersweet day, to say the least « 

Henderson says their timing turned out to be rather lucky, as the opening in mid-August gave time to see where the brewing industry was amid all the closures

“We were extremely worried at the time, but I think a lot of breweries, especially those that put their beer in their cans and sell it elsewhere, have found the pandemic moderately survivable,” Henderson says. “Sales beer in most places increased in this format As people obviously don’t go to bars and restaurants as much People drink a lot more at home So it quickly turned out that it wasn’t that scary  »

The Superflux team had time to adapt, he said « We were very, very lucky in this respect »

Another factor in their early success with the location is the close camaraderie of the local brewing industry and the loyal fan base of craft beer lovers

« The response we get from people who live in communities, the things we have seen from our neighbors in Strathcona, East Van and Commercial, it’s amazing People are very, very happy that we are here And it’s great Even though there are a lot of breweries around, people are really excited to have another one, ”says Henderson“ On the first day we had a line up literally around the block, which was crazy and totally unexpected Or, it was unexpected by me and Matt, at least

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News from around the world – CA – Superflux Beer Company takes root in « Yeast Van »



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