KREBS — Choc Beer Co. is undertaking an equipment expansion this year that will allow the company to better slake consumers' thirst for one of the hottest beer brands in the country.
Choc President Zach Prichard said the company purchased a used brewing system from Sweetwater Brewing Co., of Atlanta, that will roughly triple the Oklahoma brewery's production capability.
The move became a necessity partly due to the success of Tulsa's Prairie Artisan Ales, which contracts to make its beer on Choc's equipment.
“We started doing the Prairie thing last August, September,” Prichard said.
“The growth of those brands has been phenomenal.
“We can't make enough of our beers, or enough of their beers. We're going to work to correct that problem.”
The system is being loaded out of the Sweetwater facility this weekend, and Prichard said they hope to begin installation at Krebs next week and start brewing with it by the end of November. Plans call for Choc to sell off its current system.
The purchase will make necessary a reconfiguration of the Choc brewery, which adjoins the popular Pete's Place Italian restaurant. The brewing system will be set up in the current storage warehouse area, with bottling and packaging shifted to the old brewhouse footprint, Prichard said.
The four-vessel, 50-barrel system would allow Choc to produce roughly 6,200 gallons of beer at a time. It replaces the brewery's current two-vessel, 15-barrel system.