The town of Douglas, NB, located in Fredericton on the North Side of the city, will soon be getting their first craft brewery with the opening of 3Flip Brewing in the near future (although technically the brewery is within Fredericton city limits). This small operation recently announced their plans to open, and owners Nick and Alicia were very quick to respond to our request for a Q&A, so that we can share all that you need to know before they launch early next year.
Can you tell us a little bit about yourselves?
We are Nick Jones and Alicia Cassidy, former Retail Moguls and future Beer Tycoons (Just kidding, we’re just here for the good beer and great people). We’ve spent the last 8 years living across NS, NB and ON and made the decision last year to move back to Nick’s hometown of Fredericton (well, Douglas, really).
How did you get into the world of beer?
About 7 years ago, while living in Moncton, we started trying local beer just for fun. Alicia has always been a fan of Propeller Brewing, having grown up in Halifax, and we wanted to support the local beer industry (stick it to The Man aka the Big Breweries, right?). Pump House quickly became our typical go-to spot for a beer and a bite. With a taste for what great beer could be and Nick’s dad being a former home brewer, we picked up homebrewing as a hobby, starting with basic kits. The hobby grew into a passion (probably more of an obsession, if we’re being honest). We moved to Ontario in 2013, where the craft beer industry was booming, and that’s when the passion really took off. We spent a lot of time at our local breweries (probably too much time) and we loved the culture and vibe of a craft brewery. It wasn’t long before we jumped into homebrewing full-steam, shifting to all-grain and playing around with recipes.
What made you decide to take the step into opening a brewery?
Opening our own brewery has always been a dream of ours since we made our first batch (and it turned out pretty good). We actually bought our three 1 BBL tanks in 2016 to start the process and planned on buying piece by piece over time until we had everything we needed. Then life circumstances brought us to a crossroads, and Nick had to make a career choice – continue to ride the retail roller coaster or shift gears and start something new. It was a tough choice – and slightly terrifying – but we figure it’s now or never and we decided to go all in; if you’re passionate enough about something and have the drive to make it succeed, you’ll always come out on top.
What is the culture or ethos of the brewery?
We both feel connected to the “underground” scene, where action sports goes hand in hand with that punk-rock spirit. 3Flip is about rebelling against the norm, pushing the limits of creativity. Our motto is “Brewing beer for the misfits, outcasts and freaks aka the innovators, creators and revolutionaries”. Our goal is to brew exciting beer that tastes great and doesn’t always fit the standards and styles.
Can you tell us about the beers you plan on offering initially? Any seasonals or one-offs in the works?
We’re launching with a couple of what we feel will be our staples that have been recipes in development for a while now.
Oat Cold (Oatmeal Stout) 5.2% ABV, 34 IBU
Brewed with Maris Otter, along with a good helping of quick oats, dark malts and both flaked and roasted barley give it the roasty stout flavor and aroma that everyone loves with touch of sweetness on the front-end. Taking its name from the terrible/awesome snowboarding movie from the early 2000s, for those that remember this one’s for you.
Anonymous Amber Ale (American Amber) 5.0% ABV, 40 IBU
Our take on the classic American Amber style brewed with a simple grist of Pale and Crystal malts, but with an extra kick of bitterness on the back end from upping the hop profile using Apollo hops. If you’re wondering about the name, well so is 3Flip – this beer is anonymous even to them.
Pretty Fly for a White IPA (White IPA) 6.5% ABV, 70 IBU
There are so many IPAs out there that we decided why not be different and make our a White IPA. Using the grist and spice profile of a Belgian Wit and the hop additions of an IPA this is something to take your tastebuds by storm! Heavily hopped and dry hopped with a mix of Apollo, Amarillo and Centennial hops give this a truly unique flavor with lots of citrus and floral kicks as well as the orange and coriander flavors of the Belgian Wit. As for the name, it speaks for itself, and now you’ve probably got that song stuck in your head if you grew up in the 90’s and early 2000’s.
We’ve also got a few other beers we’ll be adding to the main lineup in 2019 that we think will make an impact, especially our Root Beer Milk Stout. We’ll have some seasonals planned as well – think blackberries, jalapenos, winter warmers and bacon. And our brains are always turning, searching for inspiration for the next one.
(edited 20190125 to reflect their launch beers)
What are your plans for distribution?
At launch we’ll just be selling kegs to local bars and restaurants as well as NB Liquor for their growler fill stations. But we’re moving fast, with plans to sell bottles in late 2019, and open a taproom in 2020 for tastings and growler fills.
Do you have some initial accounts in the area lined up to serve your beers?
We’ve been working with NB Liquor to start sales in early 2019. We don’t have any accounts locked down yet but will be starting the sales process within the next month. We’ll keep you posted on where you can find us as we get closer!
Have you had any assistance from other breweries and people in Atlantic Canada, or from elsewhere?
This industry is so unique in that everyone welcomes you with open arms. We’ve had great support and conversations with brewers and owners from some of the other Fredericton breweries, as well as those across the province. We’ve also had some great support from our Scotian neighbors, and breweries in Ontario. I think moreAle said it best in their profile a bit ago, about being small and in the early stages and maybe a bit shy. We couldn’t agree more but have been more than thankful of all the support we’ve had so far!
Where do you hope to see your brewery in the next 2-3 years?
We plan to launch a taproom in 2020 on the north side of Fredericton. We’re both passionate about the customer experience since we’ve spent so many years in the retail world, and we want to give craft beer lovers a chance to get the full 3Flip experience – a little grungy, a little edgy, and all fun times. Our goal is to expand our capacity at the same time (as long as everyone likes the beer!)
Do you have an approximate opening date?
Right now we’re finalizing the brewery setup (in our basement, which you can imagine is a blessing and a curse) and completing the last of some licensing requirements. We’re aiming for a January 2019 launch in restaurants, bars and NB Liquor growler fill stations. We’re hoping to throw a launch party and we’ll keep everyone updated. We’re beyond excited to meet our customers face to face!
What does your brew system look like and what is your anticipated output?
We’re brewing on a 1BBL (120 L) all-electric brewhouse based off of the tried and true The Electric Brewery Design by Kal. We’ll be doing back to back batches to fill our four 2 BBL fermenters and then move them to our 2 BBL brite for keg-filling. We’ve left ourselves lots of room in our setup to keep up with demand!
Care to share some info on your brewing history?
Like most brewers, we started at home, playing around with techniques and very quickly perfecting the art of burning wort onto a kitchen stovetop. Eventually, we moved on to making great beer. Just for kicks, we entered the GTA Homebrewers Association Brew Slam a few years back (only contest we ever entered), and ended up winning 3rd place. That was the kick in the butt we needed to focus on getting our lives in order to pursue brewing full-time.
Do you have a favorite beer style, beer, or brewery whose beers you enjoy drinking?
It’s too hard to pick a favourite! But we guess you could say Alicia likes reds and ambers, while Nick is a bit of a hop head as well as a fan of strong beers.
How about favourite style or ingredient to brew with?
Citra comes to mind – mostly because our brewdog shares the name.
Anything else you’d like to share, we’d love pass it along.
We’re excited to meet everyone over the coming months to share our beer, stories and a good laugh!
Thanks to Nick and Alicia for taking the time to answer our questions and give everyone an idea of what’s coming in 2019 from 3Flip. Watch for updates on their website (under construction) and especially their social media accounts (Fb/Ig/Tw) to find out when their grand opening will be.