Red Bus Brewing Company is riding into townBy: Rachel Zirin, Senior Reporter
There hasn’t been a production brewery located in Folsom for a number of decades, but projected for early 2018, Red Bus Brewing Company is riding into town and opening up their doors to the community.
Owner Erik Schmid is also the owner of the Brewmeister, a homebrew shop located at 802 Reading Street, but his dream has always been of owning a brewery, he said.
Schmid originally was looking for a creative way to transport people from the parking garage and Sutter Street up a couple blocks to the brewery. He said he looked around until he came across an old red VW bus and thought, ‘What could be cooler than that?’ When he consulted with his insurance agent, he was shut down.
The long-time Folsom resident said he looked at different historical Folsom-type names for the brewery, but he loved the van so much that he decided to name it after that.
Red Bus Brewing Company will be a seven-barrel production brewery and tasting room. Schmid said he will be keeping the homebrew shop for those who also want to grab a beer while they shop.
The beer Schmid and his co-brewer Nik Stevens plan to brew will always be rotating.
“We’ll do some IPAs – what the public wants, but that’s not necessarily what I and Nik want,” he said. “We’re much more European/German kind of guys. We’ll have a Kolsch, Pilsner, and of course we’ll have an English-style porter and stouts.”
Schmid said with a seven-barrel system, which is relatively small, they won’t be brewing large batches.
“You’ll see different things on tap all the time,” he said. “I’ll go from what we feel like brewing to what we think people want to see. You will also see some consistency on tap for those popular beers.”
Something unique that Schmid plans to incorporate in the future is brewing with an open book.
“If you come in, we’ll be able to tell you exactly what is in the beer, or we will publish a version that is close to the recipe and add it in the homebrew kits,” he said.
Schmid said the entire area will be licensed so people will be able to walk around and sit near the tanks, as well as hang at the tasting bar.
“During busier times, there will be seating in the warehouse. It is a cool factor to be able to sit next to the tanks. People dig that,’ he said. “I’m looking forward to the reaction from people and to see how they like it. We’re looking to be a small boutique neighborhood-type brewery. We’re not looking to be the next big thing.”
Hours are not set in stone, but construction has begun. For more information, go to RedBusBrew.com or RedBusBrew on Facebook and Instagram.
“If I were looking to do this anywhere else, I would have to take a harder look because there are so many breweries everywhere,” he said. “The fact that there hasn’t been a production brewery in Folsom since the late 1880s made Folsom very attractive.”