Now for the most boring part of our story, navigating our way through all the red-tape and government agencies that must be dealt with when opening a brewery. First and foremost is the ABC. The process to get our Type 23 license took longer than anticipated due to some unpredictable events. I’d rather not relive those events, so moving on.
Second, is LAPD. I would highly recommend that before signing a lease, you schedule a meeting with the local LAPD district office. The local district LAPD office will have insight into the community in which you are trying to open and can offer some great advice. Our local LAPD district has been very reasonable with us and we have successfully worked with them to resolve some outstanding issues relating to our licensing. We are looking forward to having a great relationship with them over the next few years.
The TTB (Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau) process for us was surprisingly easy. It may have been the easiest permit to obtain in this whole process. Everything was online and for once the federal government made things pretty easy.
In addition to the government licenses and permits we needed, we also had to work with local community members and groups to get our license. We needed to educate community members about what a craft brewery is and why the industry is good for communities. In addition to educating others about craft brewing, we also learned a great deal about Boyle Heights by attending community meetings, planning committee meetings, fundraisers and other events. I also become more of a politician than I ever planned on, working with both our city councilman and state senator’s office, both of which were immensely helpful. The main thing I learned through this whole process was to keep pushing. Don’t necessarily take no as an answer because no one is as passionate about your business and dream as you, so don’t quit until you get an outcome you want.