We had the good fortune of connecting with Ryan Wibby and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Ryan, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
It has always been a goal of mine to own a brewery for 2 main reasons. The first reason is that I wanted to be able to brew the beers that I like to make and are of my own creation. Before we opened Wibby Brewing I worked at few different breweries. During these work experiences I realized how much I wanted to have full control of the different products that we were making but I wasn’t ever in a position to have that kind of decision power. Founding and owning Wibby Brewing means that I am able to create the products that we are producing and I am able to decide when changes or tweaks need to be made to improve the products. The second reason is that I always want to be in control of my career destiny. Growing up my father had worked his way to partner at his business. For many years he ran this company and the 2 founding members had very little to do with the day to day operations. As the two founding members of this company got closer to selling the business they dismissed my father from his job and used a loop hole in his contract that allowed them to take all of his retirement savings which he was never able to get back despite many legal suits. This experience made me never want to have anyone else in control of my own career destiny and the only way I saw that happening was by starting my own business.
What should our readers know about your business?
At Wibby Brewing we only produce lagers, which are cold fermented and take twice as long to produce than ales that are more common place. This means that when we are growing the brewery we are forced to invest heavily on equipment to keep up with demand which is why many craft breweries tend to produce beers that don’t require as much time and real estate. This has been challenging as we try to strike a balance of positive cash flow and increasing production capacity. Another challenge that we have faced is that many consumers believe that lager beers can only be light, boring pilsners (even other craft lager breweries tend to only produce this type of beer). But I am a firm believer that lager beers can have a wide variety of flavors. I see this challenge as a great opportunity as I get to use my creativity and experience to develop flavors of lagers that are completely different from any other lagers you can find. This helps keep our product lineup fresh and new.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Red Rocks is a must. Enjoying the Wibby Brewing patio on a nice warm day and perhaps even having a pool party there. Enjoying margarita on the roof top of the Rio in Boulder. Rock climbing in boulder canyon. Having a lunch at the NCAR cafeteria in Boulder. Attending a CU basketball game.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My parents deserve a shoutout as they have always supported and encouraged me whole heartedly as I pursued my career in the craft beer industry. My wife, Robin, also deserves a shoutout as she has taken Wibby Brewing to new levels with her creativity, perseverance, and attention for detail.
Jesse Borell NoCoast