Arguably Arizona's hottest brewery going, the three Beards — Jonathan Buford, Brett Dettler and Patrick Ware — are making some serious waves in the AZ beer community. They recently received multiple accolades from reputable site RateBeer, including top new brewery in the world (that's right, the world) as well as having three of the world's top 50 new beers. So how the hell did these three bearded brothers band together? See for yourself.
|Wash those dishes, Wilderness dude|
Then came Kickstarter. Now well-networked in the Arizona beer community, Jonathan met his goal of raising at least $40,000 and had enough funds to buy a brewing system, barrels for aging beers among other essentials. But those funds barely scratched the surface of what was really needed to open a fully operational brewery. He needed some help.
|This food a'int gonna run itself.|
With Brett figuring out the financial logistics and Jonathan concocting new recipes, there was still something missing.
Patrick: Apparently Jonathan and Patrick Ware look a lot alike — they were told this often. It must have been meant to be, for these two finally met at one of SanTan Brewing's Brew's Cruise events a couple years back. The two instantly connected.
|Yes, both your nipples are still there Patrick.|
What's next? Though only open for five months, the Wilderness boys have accomplished more for the state of Arizona than some other breweries have in five years. Their focus on local is unparalleled — whether it's using high-quality fruit from a prominent Gilbert farmer or harvesting their own proprietary wild yeast strain from the great outdoors.
But the Beards are just beginning. Sure, expansion and distribution are part of the business plan, but there's no rush. They learned their lesson with rushing some things during the brewpub build-out phrase, so slow and steady will win this race.
There are, however, some very exciting things coming down the Wilderness pike. Look for their first coolship beer, the French Oak-aged Batch 50, to pucker palates in the coming months. Or how about an ale fermented with deep-red saguaro fruit. Not enough? They'll also be expanding their barrel program with barrels from highly regarded distilleries.
The future certainly looks bright for this bearded brood, but I'd like to file a formal complaint with the manager for this hair I found in my Superstition Coffee Stout...