March 23rd, 2015
Last week, drillers from Jerome’s struck water at the future site of K3: KettleHouse Brewing Company’s Bonner expansion. The location of the well is just upstream of the mouth of the Blackfoot on the far east end of the Bonner Mill. As you’re leaving Bonner heading east, it would be on your left after the last row house. For some exciting video of the moment when the top of the aquifer was breached at about 47 feet below surface, click here. Drilling was stopped at about 120 feet where the water flow was awesome and pure. We’ll be testing the water this week and expecting the results next week.
Water is the single most important ingredient in beer. Without a pure source of water, we cannot make our World Cup(R) quality beers. The average brewery uses 7 gallons of water to produce one gallon of beer. At the KettleHouse Northside facility, our ratio is about 6 to 1. Our new facility will be designed to improve on our water use ratio and better treat our effluent.
A stable and pure source of water is one reason why we picked this spot to build a 40,000 bbl packaging facility. It is part of the source of the Missoula Valley Aquifer and is one of the best aquifers in the world as far as we’re concerned. The location of our well dips into the aquifer upstream of the mill site and all other development happening downstream towards Missoula. While we have yet to close on this property, finding suitable water with proper flow rates will remove one of the many hurdles we must clear to begin our expansion. We are excited to take this step towards ensuring a stable supply of Cold Smoke(R) Scotch Ale, and others, as our demand continues to grow.
For some more cool facts about our water in the Missoula area, check out this awesome video the Clark Fork Coalition put together: