Netherlands-based Minibrew has raised $2.8 million in seed funding after completing a successful $350,000 crowdfunding campaign to bring some smarts to the home-brew process.
The Minibrew is a little keg with a big brain. When we first met the company in 2015 they offered a whiff of high-tech to the brewing process, adding a monitored brew vessel and mobile app to the age-old technique of slopping a bunch of wheat, yeast and hops together until something tasty came out. Founders Bart van de Kooij and Olivier van Oord have partnered with multiple international breweries to offer recipes for the machine, and they plan on shipping the final product in Q1 2018.
The team is proud to be able to offer full control from wort to bottling.
“In terms of brewing machines that claim to deliver beer, such as ‘fully automated home brewery’ they both forget a critical step: fermenting,” said van de Kooij. “Although the others have a fermentation process, it is manual and not automatic as promoted. This might work for some who have knowledge and want to play with fermentation time and carbonation levels, but the brew quality will ultimately suffer in flavor and users will not be able to reproduce the same brew again.”
“We stumbled on the idea through experimenting a lot with brewing our own beers while working. We were seeing a massive upswing in do-it-yourself brewing, but discovered actually creating accurate and replicable beers was quite hard,” he said. “The current players out there were not fulfilling a user-experience to make quality beer. We thought it was time to change the beer space and bring the fun of discovering great taste back to get everyone into brewing.”
The system is also now far more automated and the team has slashed the price from a heady, hoppy €2,000 to €999, a welcome change. The kit can create multiple styles of beer, including wheat and IPA. The best thing? The kit turns into a portable keg once you’re done with the fermentation process.
Is $1,000 for an automatic keg still too expensive for you? Why not try simply carbonating some water and adding a little flavorless vodka to create Bud Light on the cheap? Home brewing, as they say, is easy!