The craft beer industry is filled with collaborations. There is a constant stream of beer released all over the world that has been produced by breweries coming together, sharing innovation, and building partnerships. This practice drives progress and is a defining quality of the craft beer community.
Public House Brewing Company in Rolla, Missouri embraces the craft beer spirit of collaboration. Their focus on collaboration includes promoting sustainability, highlighting local producers, and supporting the communities where they do business.
Opened in 2010, Public House expanded to a second location in St. James, Missouri next door to the St. James Winery in 2014. While it’s rare to see a winery partnering with a brewery, this relationship created a community space called “The Gardens” in 2016. This remodeled space between the winery and the brewery is kid and pet friendly with games including a life-size chess board and bocce ball. In addition to serving as a community space, The Gardens is also used to host fundraising events to benefit local nonprofits and community organizations. On Veteran’s Day, Public House donated $1 for every pint sold and the St. James Veterans Home was the beneficiary.
Other partners include Giddy Goat Coffee House in downtown Rolla. Public House worked with them to create the “Giddy Goat Coffee Stout.” Moondance Farms is a 126-acre, family-run farm that produces organic vegetables, eggs, poultry, and beef. Ingredients from the farm are used in the taproom menu. Brandon Hofherr, Marketing Director commented, “They (Moondance Farms) truly care about their animals and work exceptionally hard to ensure they are producing the highest quality ingredients.”
Ozark Forest Mushroom, which is a 500-acre family farm that cultivates mushrooms grown on logs. Ozark is where Public House sources its mushrooms for the taproom menu. Hofherr shared: “(Ozark) embodies the values that we live by and they take care of their land to ensure that generations to come will also benefit from their work.”
Hofherr also shared this mushroom joke, “Why was the mushroom invited to all the parties?… Because he is a FUNGI!”
Throughout their collaborations, Public House Brewing Co. strives to give back to preserve the environment. Hofherr explained that they are always looking for ways to be more sustainable. As they are considering incorporating solar energy. He explained, “sustainability is an ever-evolving process, so we are always looking for different ways and new ideas to improve our processes.”
During the brewing process, for example, once the grains have been separated from the liquid, they are no longer needed for brewing, and are considered “spent grain.” Public House shares their spent grain with their farming partners to use as cattle feed as well as with St. James Winery vineyard for compost. Hofherr explained, “this helps us build soil health for vines.” It is a full circle of collaboration.
Some of the other sustainability programs Public House implements include:
Aluminum cans: using aluminum cans in the brewery for better recyclability and energy savings.
Composting solid waste from both locations.
Energy efficiency and LED lighting
Insulated tanks: the brewery reduces energy use to cool and maintain temperatures by using insulated tanks.
Reclaim water from the heat exchanger for brewing water.
Recycling aluminum, cardboard, glass, plastic, and scrap metal.