Head Brewer/Owner: Rick Allen
Rick spent years as a investment banker before deciding to start Heater Allen Brewing. Disappointed by the stale, heat damaged European Pilsners that were sold in the US and the lack of credible American Pilsners, Rick made it his mission to make the best Bohemian-style Pilsner possible. He enjoys cycling, collecting and tasting local wines, and is passionate about locally sourced food products.
Assistant Brewer: Lisa Allen
Lisa joined the brewery in December of 2009. After living the life of a wine vagrant for a few years after University, Lisa decided to start working for the family business. She enjoys Champagne, Crossfit, BBC Television, and, of course, beer. Check out her blog where she occasionally writes about life as a brewster as well as everyday stuff.
How the Brewery came to be
When Rick started home brewing 25 years ago, he seemed to have a knack for making good beer. When the opportunity came up to move away from the banking world, his first thought was to look into brewing. After a short stint at a California winery, Rick decided that a brewery focused around a more niche-oriented product made sense. Before getting licensed, he spent a year working on brewing techniques, consistency, and recipe development. At one point he brewed 14 batches of Pilsner in a row - unheard of for a home brewer!
With encouragement from family and a number of friends, Rick started Heater Allen in April of 2007. The brewery started with a glorified home-brew system of 20 gallon batches. After the initial success of the brewery a 6 BBL system was purchased and installed in the spring of 2008. In late fall of 2013 a brand new 15 BBL system was installed to keep up with growing demand. Production for 2013 was around 570 BBL and the new system will allow the brewery to produce about 500 more BBL per year.
Where the brewery got its name
Heater is Rick's wife Jan's maiden name, and Allen is his last name. He figures that you should always give your wife first billing. While Rick has little German heritage on his side of the family, most of Jan's family is of German descent. Their daughter Lisa who works for the brewery is a true Heater Allen.