A New Plan

Planning is everything.  Since the little one arrived a little over a month ago we’ve made a lot of progress.  We have a new business plan completed, we’ve had multiple meetings with potential investors, we have some networking events we’ll be attending soon, and we’ve scouted some new locations in Anaheim.  Having a month off of work for both of us has given us a lot of time to work on the business.  We seem to be closer to our dream now than we have ever been.  It’s definitely an exciting time.

We cut back a lot of our costs to make it easier to open our doors.   Dreaming big is expensive, so we’ve scaled back our dreams a little bit.  The most important thing is to just get open.  What we’ve done lately will make it easier for us to accomplish this goal.  This included coming up with a more grass-roots approach to our marketing, scaling back the inventory, and buying used instead of new equipment.

Start small, grow big.  That’s our new approach.  After we get our first store firing on all cylinders we can open up a bigger location and have the selection I’ve always dreamed of.  Our dream is to open multiple locations down the road.  Have potentially 3-4 locations in Orange County and then move on.  There is so much opportunity out there.

It still blows my mind that it’s been over a year since we started working on this dream of ours.  Our goal is to be open by Spring of next year.  We think it’s very possible.  We just have to get out there and get the money.  Included in the new business plan is a new strategy for raising investment capital.  Instead of trying to land a couple big fish, we’re casting a net across a big area to try and capture a lot of smaller fish.  We’re trying, and we won’t give up until we’ve done it.

We appreciate everyone who’s been reading along, supporting us, and has given us a push in the right direction.  There are many of you, and it keeps us focused and reminds us that we aren’t crazy and that people actually do need a shop like this in Orange County.  I just can’t wait for you to pull up a stool to the bar so I can pour you a pint of our newest delicious craft beer.

As always please spread the word and if you know anyone who might be interested send em our way or fill out the form below.

Until then…Prost!

 

Welcome to the world baby girl!

  
Ainsley Lynn Amend

Born: July 27th, 2015 @ 12:24am

7 lbs, 4oz – 19in long

We have a new addition to the LDBSOC Family! We’ll be staying at Saddleback Women’s Hospital through Thursday, possibly Friday, and would love for you to stop by and meet her.  

The next few months will be insane but we’re so excited.  She’s so beautiful!  

An update on the biz: Everything is going well. Like you all saw in the last post things were slowing down a bit but we’re back up and running.  Our new business plan is done and we’re actively trying to raise capital again.  We have a new approach and we’ve really cut costs so things are optimistic again.  

Thanks for all your support! We can’t wait for all of you to meet her soon.  Cheers! 

The Dream Is Still Alive

Pint Glass

Great news!!!  Our shirts and pint glasses finally arrived so we’ve shipped them off to all our loyal indiegogo contributors!!! Woo HOO!!!!  We hope you all enjoy them and fill your pint glasses with tasty craft beer.

Wow…it’s been a while since I’ve posted.  I read somewhere that when you don’t make a blog entry for over a month it usually means the blog has died.  Well that’s not the case, not the case at all.  Truth is I haven’t known what to blog about for a while.  I’d get an idea and then change my mind and then want to blog but get busy.  You know, life happens.  But let’s get real for a second here.

We got off to a great start.  We put the business plan together, acquired a couple investors, and started working on a lease agreement with a promising new shopping center.  Those investors have since fallen off the face of the planet, the lease has fallen through, and now we’re re-thinking our business plan.  Plain and simple I feel we’re at a cross-roads.

This isn’t all doom and gloom.  While it’s not where I wanted us to be at this point, it is what it is as they say.  We don’t have a location, our investors don’t seem interested anymore…so what do we have?  We still have the idea.  We still have a solid business plan that we can build upon.  I’m going to take this opportunity to start from the beginning.

How I plan on starting over is reading the business plan from start to finish and updating everything.  I feel as though I lost my passion for this project once it all became about the money.  We tried for so long to find investors and capital that I lost sight of why we started this in the first place.  The dream was always there, but instead of talking about the dream and my passion for it, I was always talking about how much money we needed and where could we get the money.

Let’s find that passion again.  While revising the business plan we’re going to start cutting costs, downsizing our initial ideas, and make our idea more affordable for investors.  While it was almost easy to get our first two investors last time, it became increasingly difficult to acquire more investors needing so much capital.  We think our ask was too high and maybe a little crazy.  This doesn’t mean the shop will be any less cool or super small, but it’s going to be more practical.

So while you might not here from us as much, don’t think we’ve given up.  Our baby is due in a couple months and family comes first…but the dream is still very much alive.  Last Drop Bottle Shop & Tap Room will open it’s doors in Orange County some day.  Keep following along on our facebook, twitter and instagram for updates.

Until next time, Cheers!

It’s a…GIRL! And what else we’ve been up to…

It's a girl!

It’s a…GIRL

It’s a girl!  Ahhhh!  We counted down from three and were instantly covered in PINK silly string from all our friends and family.  It was a rush.  We waited for 20 long weeks to finally find out what our baby was gonna be.  It’s hard to find the words to express that feeling.  You instantly start imagining what they are going to look like, what they’ll be into, who they’ll become.  Wow what an awesome day.

Beer had to play a part in the day of course.  I brought out a bottle of Freckle from The Bruery to celebrate.  This dark and gorgeous beer provided us with some deep flavors of roasted malt, chocolate, coffee, and that spicy mole.  We passed it around and filled our pink cups in celebration.  Cheers!

Collage

Collage

Cheers with pink cups

Cheers with the Pink cups!

Along with all the baby planning, nesting, coming up with a birth plan, filling out a registry for the baby shower, figuring out what we’re going to name the little one etc. etc. etc….We’ve also been getting this business off the ground.

I haven’t posted an update lately because of how crazy everything has been but here’s what’s happened in the last couple of months.

I attended the Orange County Beer Society 4th Annual Chili Cook-Off and Bottle Share.  What an awesome event!  If you like chili and beer, this is where you should have been that day.  I met some awesome people, made new friends, and connected with some important people in the craft beer community.  Oh, and I tasted some AMAZING beers!  Here are some photos of the day.

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A Vertical of Firestone’s Sucaba (formerly Abacus). This was the highlight of the share!

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My favorite beer of the share. Kuhnhenn’s Raspberry Eisbock Lager (15.5% Abv!)

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The line up of chili’s! All were delicious…but there could only be one winner.

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Everyone hangin out and haven fun!

A flight of tasty brews from OCBS's gracious host Peace Brewery

A flight of tasty brews from OCBS’s gracious host Peace Brewery.

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The end result

For those of you who contributed to our Indiegogo Campaign…THANK YOU… from the bottom of our hearts.  Our contributors will be receiving their perks soon so keep on the look out.  Our video turned out amazing thanks to Central Studios.  If you haven’t seen it yet go check it out.

We are still working on acquiring a location in Anaheim and are getting closer than ever to finalizing a lease.  We still plan on opening up sometime this year and we’ll keep you all updated on our progress.

If you or anyone you know is interested in investing in our dream let us know here. We’re still trying to raise capital and are looking for partners.  Cheers!

Who Loves Craft Beer As Much As We Do And Is Ready to Partner With Us?

We’re getting close to finalizing everything for our amazing location in Anaheim but before we do we still need additional capital.

We’ve raised a significant amount of capital already but still need one or more final partners for us to move forward.

Who’s ready to go on that journey with us? It’s a huge risk and it’s not going to be easy, but that’s what makes it fun right?

Our paper work is ready to go. If you or anyone you know might be interested give us a hollar! Cheers!

Our Indiegogo Campaign is LIVE!

indiegogo

Who wants free beer? For life? How about a sweet T-Shirt or Pint Glass designed by our friend Monte Mitchell?

That’s right everyone, our indiegogo campaign is up. Many thanks go out to Central Studios for shooting our video. We’re hoping that contributions from our friends, family, and the craft beer community will get us to our goal. With the funds we’ll be paying for all the expensive paperwork, contracts, lawyer fees, and work done on our website. We’ll also be using the money to help with the lease we’re working on securing if we can get the rest of the money we need from partners / investors.

Please let your family and friends know about us and spread the word. As I write this we’ve already raised $1,050!!! Woo hoo! Thank you to everyone for all the support so far and for whatever support is to come. We can’t reach our goal without all of you. Cheers!

We shot our Indiegogo video today! And a special announcement…

As you might have heard we have been planning on running an Indiegogo campaign for a while.  This will be a great way to raise some awareness about who we are and what we’re trying to accomplish.  Not only will this video be great publicity but we could also raise some money which is pretty cool too.  Having a successful campaign legitimizes your market and shows a proof of concept.  In other words, we can go to investors and show them we aren’t crazy and that there is a community of people ready to support us.  Making this campaign a success is kind of a big deal.

comp shot

Today we met up with Jena’s cousin Paul to shoot our Indiegogo video.  Paul and his wife Kelly run Central Studios together shooting videos and photography for weddings, businesses, or whatever the occasion might be.  In this case we were shooting a crowd funding video for Indiegogo and Paul was all over it.

We met up at The Estate On Second in downtown Santa Ana around 10am this morning.  The owner’s of the building are currently renovating but allowed us to use the upstairs.  We brought our chairs along and found a nice little nook by a window where Paul set up his gear.

us at estate on second

I gotta admit, Jena and I were nervous at first.  How often are you in front of a video camera?  We felt the pressure a bit but didn’t fold and delivered some Oscar worthy performances.  Haha…YA RIGHT!  We weren’t shining like stars in Hollywood but we pulled through.  Paul was great at directing the flow of what we were talking about and giving us ideas.

When we were done shooting the interview segments we headed over to Beach City Brewery where Glenn and his crew allowed us to shoot some beer porn.  We got some cool shots of beer being poured for what Paul called, “B-Roll,” whatever that means.  We had never been there before and jumped on the opportunity to taste some local brew.  Their Hang 5 IPA and PCH Pale Ale turned out to be my favorites.

paul at beach city

All in all it was a successful day and we can’t wait to see the finished product.  As soon as it’s done we’ll be blasting it everywhere and we hope you all can spread the word or contribute to our dream.

Oh and what’s the special announcement you ask?

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Yepp that’s right.  We’re pregnant!  Jena is due on July 27th.  So unfortunately for her she won’t be going to tastings or bottle shares with me for a while but that’s okay.  And I thought I was motivated to get this business off the ground before, right?

Cheers!

OC BREW HO HO and Pacific Park Market’s Bottle Share Event!

brew ho ho

I was fortunate enough to attend the sold out OC BREW HO HO Holiday Ale Festival over the previous weekend.  Unlimited tastings, Slater’s 50/50 serving up grub, and live bands made this an outstanding festival.  I was able to taste some amazing beers like Bottle Logic’s Dark Star, Beach City Brewing’s Let it go, Let it go, Goose Island’s Bourbon County Brand Stout (BCBS), and Monkish Brewing’s Caffe Della Vita which was brewed with Portola Coffee beans and was without a doubt one of my favorites on the day.  One of the most memorable moments happened when Beach City Brewery announced they were tapping their Let it Go, Let it Go Imperial Stout and the DJ started playing the song.  Everyone in the giant tent started singing along and dancing.  Other memorable moments included the amazing smell of the garlic fries being served up by Slater’s 50/50 and giant Jenga being played at the entrance to the giant tent.  The festival lasted 4 hours and I wish it would have gone on all night long.

pac park market

Last night I attended Pacific Park Market’s Almost Year-End Bottle Share.  It was AMAZING.  I brought the Bruery’s Oaked Old Richland Barleywine and Three Floyd’s War Mullet DIPA.  People were pretty happy and I was glad no one else brought what I brought haha.  Other’s brought an 09′ Black Tuesday from the Bruery, Founder’s Kentucky Breakfast Stout (KBS), The Bruery’s Floyd D’Rue and Rue D’Floyd, Ballast Point’s Grapefruit Sculpin, and Hangar 24’s Pugachev’s Cobra.  And that’s just to start.  I would say overall I tried about 20 different beers (1oz pours of course :-P).  Someone also brought Firestone’s Bretta Rose and Almanac’s Devil’s Advocate which are some pretty rare sours and turned out to be two of my favorite’s on the night.

Bottle Share’s are an awesome opportunity to try some great beers and meet new people that share a common interest.  This was an amazing event and we will be sure to host similar events at Last Drop Bottle Shop when we open.

As before we are still looking for investors.  I met an awesome person at the BREW HO HO who is interested in investing and I will be hearing back from them shortly.  I also met another potential investor about two weeks ago who is VERY interested and will be pitching our idea to someone who is very wealthy.  I have some whale’s on the hook, now I just gotta reel ’em in! Haha.  Wish us luck.

If you are interested in investing please use the form below.

Until next time, Cheers!

Our trip to the Central Coast Breweries

Last weekend we took a trip up the 101 to visit the beautiful Central Coast of California.

We departed from sunny OC in the morning and stopped in LA for breakfast.  We found an awesome little place called Cafe Stella where we shared an eggs benedict plate and some freshed squeezed juice drinks.  After finally waking up we hit the road for a couple hours until we reached the Surf Brewery in Ventura.

surf brewery

Just as the name describes, this place was decked out with surfboards on the walls, an awesome mural of a sunset behind a pier, and a TV in the corner with an endless loop of slow-mo surfers catching huge waves.  The atmosphere was totally laid back and they had some awesome beers to boot.  My favorites ended up being their Oil Piers Porter and Aerial IPA on cask with mosaic and zeus hops.  It was super smooth and had an awesome hop character.  We loved the place and what topped it off was the free bottomless pretzels 🙂

After leaving the Surf Brewery we stopped in Solvang.  This is a little dutch town with and old school main street area with little shops serving up dutch sweets and coffees.  Also on every corner were wine tastings.  The central coast is littered with wineries and craft beer is trying to catch up.  While in Solvang we got some delicious pastries with hot chocolate and stopped in a place where we tasted a bunch of different cheeses.  Yum!

firestone

We hit the road and didn’t stop until we found the Firestone Walker Brewing Company in Paso Robles.  This is the big daddy of breweries on the Central Coast.  What I was surprised by was the size of the place.  It’s huge and beautiful.  We drove up at night and found the grain silo’s outside to be lit up by Christmas colors…so cool.  Over dinner we tried the Bavarian Hefeweizen and unfiltered DBA.  For desert we had a snifter of the Double DBA.  This beast comes in around 13% ABV and packs a delicious fusion of caramel, toffee, and oak.   When we checked out I had to grab a bottle to go and picked up the highly acclaimed Maltose Falcons.  I plan on aging this and will enjoy it a year from now.

The next day we went up north and checked out the Hearst Castle which was amazing and learned that even during the prohibition, William Hearst always had two beers on tap.  What a true beer lover!!!

Hearst_Castle_Casa_Grande_September_2012_panorama_2

Before we headed home we stopped by Tap It! Brewery and enjoyed some great beers like their IPA, Full Blown Stout, and my favorite, the Rimfire Red!  We also picked up a beer to go and grabbed the Cafe Noir, which we also plan on aging.

tap it

Keep a look out sometime next week for my next post about the OC Brew HO HO taking place tomorrow.  Can’t wait to tell you how it all goes.

We are fielding some quotes for shooting our funding campaign and will keep you updated on how that’s going.

As per the usual, we are still seeking investors.  If you are interested in viewing our business plan or would like to send some questions our way, feel free to use the form below.

Until next time, Cheers!