Knowing what we know now, most of us would have said 2020 was the worst possible year to open a business. Thankfully, Stephanie and Shawn Wright decided to defy that viewpoint to successfully open ReSource Brewing Co. at 3107 Eubank Blvd. NE, Suite 12, in Albuquerque’s Northeast Heights this past October. We caught up with them to reflect on their opening, as well as their hopes for the future.
Understandably, the Wrights had to make numerous changes to their original plan to be able to comply with ever-changing safety restrictions, as we learned in an email exchange for our annual Look Back/Look Ahead Series.
“2020 has certainly brought a ton of challenges industry-wide,” Stephanie wrote. “For us, we have especially felt the capacity restrictions; the hardest being that our interior space is small (mostly bar seating and sharing floor space with fermenters) and our patio space is limited. The initial business plan was based on a taproom-only model and has since required pivoting to to-go and pre-filled products through an online store. We (like everyone else) are navigating new sanitization procedures and following the science as it evolves around this virus.”
According to the Wrights, the impressive achievement of being able to open their doors in the middle of a pandemic wasn’t their only bright spot this year.
“The neighborhood support has been awesome and our staff is really incredible,” Stephanie wrote. “We feel a responsibility as business owners to do whatever we can to continue providing our team with work in a safe environment so that they can have a paycheck and an opportunity to pay their bills. The past four weeks since we’ve opened for business has been a whole slew of learning, pivoting, and just getting things figured out on the fly … So why not add in a nice foamy layer of ‘no indoor customers’ on top of things?”
Despite the struggles of running a business during these tough times, ReSource maintained a focus on regularly providing support for marginalized sectors of our community.
“(Another success) was conceptualizing our Community Beer Project and moving forward with releasing ‘Equality Stout.’ Proceeds from this beer will continuously benefit local charities that promote equality across race, gender, sexual orientation, and physical and financial boundaries,” Stephanie wrote. “This project runs all year long and we are very excited to offer something back to this beautiful state of ours!”
The Wrights aren’t shying away from reality, and they know we’re not at the end of the tunnel just yet, Stephanie wrote.
“We believe that COVID-19 is going to be around for the long haul, so we plan to take things slowly and enjoy as much as we can with our customers!” she added.
But, they maintain a positive outlook for their future in the New Mexico craft brewing community once things get back to normal.
“Hopes for 2021 are going to evolve around staying healthy and being able to start enjoying small gatherings that can focus on art, science, dogs (and cats), charities, conversations, and of course beer,” Stephanie wrote.
To comply with the most recent public health order that went into effect on Monday, ReSource has had to make yet another set of changes.
“We anticipate the shutdown will be longer than two weeks and have decided to double down and extend our hours of operation for beer-to-go sales to seven days a week,” Stephanie wrote. “There is no point in getting down about the situation since this virus and the health of our community is THE MOST IMPORTANT THING at the moment, and we all need to do what we can to help ease the burden on our overwhelmed healthcare providers and hospital system.”
But, Stephanie assured us that they will use this time behind closed doors wisely.
“Since our doors will be closed to the taproom/patio we will take the opportunity to work on new recipes, small-batch projects, and just doing what we love to do which is make tasty beers!” she wrote.
The first of those small-batch beers, in fact, is coming out this week. Thanksgiving Leftovers is a 4.5-percent ABV pale ale, with hints of cranberry and spiced orange.
ReSource now has an online store where you can order new growler fills and other merchandise.
“We are providing new glass growlers with each fill and we do not charge the customer for the glass,” Stephanie wrote. “We just ask that they recycle it or bring it back to us and we can sterilize it in our autoclave.”
For a link to their online store and the most current hours of operation for non-contact pickup please check out ReSourceBrewingCo.com or Facebook and Instagram @resourcebrewingco.
May the beer be with you, always.