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Bringing a radical new brewpub concept to downtown South Bend featuring exquisite small batch beers and farm-to-fork dishes.
Andrew Elegante
South Bend, Indiana
United States
1 Team Member

What we are about/mission 

Our mission is to “Build a stronger community, one brew at a time.” That means the community of brewers, of craft beer drinkers, of foodies, of local food producers, and of course, South Bend. We plan to celebrate and support South Bend, honoring its long heritage of brewing and food producing by making great beer and backing it up with locally sourced food. Sustainability is hard at work in South Bend and it’s a core tenet for us. Adaptive reuse is a philosophy we’re embracing fully and you’ll see it throughout our pub. We are fiercely proud of this city and it is an honor to have it as part of our name and be part of its renaissance. 

What will South Bend Brew Werks do for South Bend, IN? 

This is how we believe a business should begin; by answering the question of how it’s going to benefit its community and customers. We see ourselves as being an important piece of downtown revitalization. Visit any great college town or vibrant community, like South Bend, and you will find brewpubs. Those brewpubs often become destinations, bringing tourists and locals alike downtown. You can see this in neighboring areas like Sawyer and Three Oaks, Michigan. The Brew Werks will be that type of destination for Downtown South Bend, helping spread the message of the South Bend Renaissance and giving people one more reason to experience our wonderful downtown.

You will also find us working hand in hand with those who are also working to revitalize this city,supporting them with our treasures and talents. All of our guests, from near or afar, will be part of the revitalization by helping to fund local community organizations like The Music Village, La Casa De Amistad, and Neighborhood Resources Corp because we’re donating $.50 of each pint sold to them. The best part? You get to choose which partner! 

Great beer, delicious food, and a stronger community? Heck yeah we’re excited! 

Where your money is going 

An important aspect of any campaign is understanding what we’re using your money for. We have a couple of reasons for running the campaign. As this project has progressed, and we’ve seen how excited people are, we’ve realized that we’re going to have to change things up a bit from the original plan. 

·  We’re expanding our production capacity beyond our initial dreams to make sure we’ve got enough beer for everyone so we’re building a bigger, custom walk-in cooler. We’re also insulating the hell out of it in an effort to make it as energy efficient as possible.

·  We don’t want people waiting for clean glasses so we’re adding in a glass washer. This nifty device cleans glasses lickity split. An added benefit? There won’t be any residues on the glass to cut the foam so you’ll get a great beer every time. 

·  We want to be as green as we can so we’re upgrading to heat pump based HVAC, denim insulation, Low/No VOC paints, and LED lighting. Long lived, efficient and dimmable. Very green. Very South Bend. Very Brew Werks.

·  Our location is blessed with a great sidewalk and while we can’t use it just yet, we want to make it an inviting place for those warmer months so we need to invest in furniture and things to make it shine! 

We're excited about these additions but they are a bit expensive and that’s why we need your help! Your contribution can really enable us to make these improvements and have an even bigger impact! 

For our stretch goals we’d like to invest in a really killer, low energy sign that will do justice to this beautiful building we are housed in as well as getting a more efficient, professional grade brewing system. 

What is this Mug Club? 

Glad you asked! The Mug Club is one way for you to really make the pub yours. Local artist Paul Kuharic is crafting custom mugs for us that will bear our logo and your name and be hung prominently for all to see. These 20 oz mugs get you more beer for the price of a pint AND you get to take it home at the end of the year. Always looking to innovate, we've got some neat ideas for our members so you’re definitely going to want in, things like 

  • Members only experimental tap
  • 25% off merchandise, 
  • Quarterly members-only events (if you've heard of 3 Floyds Dark Lord Day, well, they say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery)
  • First ups for annual renewal (only $40 per year)

This is the only place to get in on the club and we’ve got a limited number of them.  Especially this time around because if you buy into our initial offering, you get to add your name to our founders wall and be glorified eternally! We won't forget that you were a founding member (and we really love founders). 

Who are our partners?

South Bend is blessed to have many amazing groups that make this a vibrant place to live. We contribute to that spirit by partnering with just a few of these organizations that are striving to strengthen our communities in different ways: The Music Village through the power of the arts, La Casa De Amistad through our vibrant and burgeoning Hispanic community, and Neighborhood Resources Corporation which empowers neighborhood groups to be the change. 

For our part, we provide support in 3 primary ways: 

1) Each pint sold at the pub results in a $.50 donation to one of these groups. Patrons choose which one by taking their "token" and putting it in a vessel designed by the organizations 

2) Alongside the vessels, we provide space for the groups to tell their story and encourage people to get involved 

3) Providing customized beer products for the groups to use in their own fundraising endeavors. For example, The Music Village would love to create a Musical Note IPA that they would sell at concerts, providing them with additional revenue 

Learn more about these groups here:

Our eats: 

We love the food movement to local, to understanding where your food came from and how it got to your plate. You’re not only benefitting your local economy, you’re benefitting your body. We work hard to provide a high quality, affordable farm to fork experience by taking classic concepts, like the grilled cheese sandwich, mac & cheese, and flat bread pizzas and making it something more.

Our beers: 

One of our favorite things to do is share a great story over an equally great beer. That’s why our beers are named after the stories of our own company. How we got here and where we’re going. We also love variety and believe it’s the spice of life so even though we’re only launching with 5, you’ll see a lot of interesting experiments and true-to-style offerings coming your way. Just one of the many benefits of our small scale system! Here are 3 beers you can expect from us:

9 Aye – Black IPA made from 9 ingredients, 68 IBU, 6.9% ABV

The StoryOne of the steps we had to go through to open the brew pub was to get approval from the St Joseph County zoning board. We’re located downtown in the Central Business District which means you can have almost any kind of business but if you want to brew, you need a special exemption. The final step in that process is to attend a board hearing where they vote on a number of proposals. Most of the ones we heard passed unanimously with a vote of 9-Aye. Hearing this spoken over and over, the idea of using it to name a beer became more and more tempting. When our vote came up and it was, in fact, 9 Aye, and this beer was born. 

Mr Elegante – Smoked Porter, 28 IBU, 5.5% ABV

The Story: One of our founders, Drew Elegante, came to beer through his family. After losing his parents at a young age, Drew became very close to his brothers, both older. Like many young men are wont to do, he looked to those brothers for inspiration. As he got older, his brothers began asking when he was going to start drinking so they could share a beer. Not a huge fan of bitterness (i.e. hops), Drew was drawn to darker beer styles like stouts and porters which he found to be delicious. As a lover of all things smokey, from bbq to tea to scotch, this is the one beer he requested. So, Mr. Elegante, this beer’s for you. 

1865 – Amber Ale, 26 IBU, 5.2% ABV

The Story: Every town, like every brew pub, has a beginning. A time when a group of dedicated individuals came together and said “let’s make something great.” For South Bend Brew Werks, that time was 2012 but for the city of South Bend, it was 1865. So to honor our kindred forefathers we are naming this beer after them, in a fashion. Because without their story, ours would never be told. 

About the Team 

Drew Elegante - The Maestro 

Drew, sometimes referred to as Mr. South Bend, came to this fair city by way of Notre Dame where he earned an MBA in 2012. He quickly fell in love with the area, with its amazing people and history of excellence, and has become a die-hard supporter of this resurgent city. You’ll recognize him by his I <3 SB shirt and great hugs. 

Drew’s experiences in the non-profit world, in the US, Haiti, South Africa, and the Philippines, have served as strong inspiration for this business as have his classroom experiences at Notre Dame where the motto of the business school is “Ask more of business”. With the help of many others, he is proud to be living that motto with the Brew Werks. 

Joel Miller – Master of the Brew

Joel is a Siebel trained brewer (meaning he actually went to beer school) who is from the area and has traveled the world in search of great beers.  His passion is for quality crafted ales that are true to style which he's excited to offer fresh to patrons at SBBW. He's got a bit of a creative streak in him as well and is looking foward to adding his own signature flourishes to the many beers on tap.

Greg Wisinski – Culinary Ninja

Greg is a trained culinary expert who has experience in starting great restaurants, most recently in Indianapolis and St Joseph, MI where he helped launch a farm to fork concept.  His experience in this endeavors makes him an invaluable asset to the team as he looks to strengthen our local farming community by crafting simple yet elegant dishes from their hard work and efforts.


·  Notre Dame MBA Brews Up a Business – BusinessWeek 

·  OK given to Downtown South Bend Brew Pub – South Bend Tribune 

·  Brew Pub Planned for Downtown – South Bend Tribune

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Risks and challenges

Every project has its challenges but we have worked hard to ensure that we have the proper pieces in place to succeed. That being said we could: 
-Produce beer that people simply don't want to drink 
-Face considerable delays in starting the business because of permitting issues

Our team has deep experience across various genres and great mentors. Not every business will succeed, but we are confident ours will

Find This Campaign On
raised by 172 people in 1 month
147% funded
No time left
$10,000 USD goal
Flexible Funding This campaign has ended and will receive all funds raised.
Campaign Closed
This campaign ended on February 25, 2014
Select a Perk
  • $5USD
    We are SBBW

    Just want to be part of it? Show up on the website listing the supporters who were there from Day One.

    5 claimed
    Estimated delivery: March 2014
  • $15USD
    Pint sized perfection

    Get a sexy pint glass with our locally designed logo and a coaster to soak up any condensation that manages to form on your beer before you drink it.

    39 claimed
    Estimated delivery: April 2014
  • $25USD
    T Shirt Glory

    Get yourself a limited edition, locally screen-printed shirt featuring our sweet new logo. Fair warning, other humans may find you irresistible when wearing this. Proceed with caution.

    23 claimed
    Estimated delivery: April 2014
  • $50USD
    All the swag

    Could you get any sexier? You'll get that locally screen printed, limited edition t-shirt, a pint glass and 2 coasters, just in case someone "borrows" one off of ya.

    24 claimed
    Estimated delivery: April 2014

    Be our Sweetheart

    Looking for love in all the right places? So are we! Mug Club members are like our sweet baboos so we're offering up a Valentine opportunity for those who just want to be in the club without all that swag hassle. Includes membership in the Mug Club &amp; your name on the founders wall.

    10 out of 10 claimed
    Estimated delivery: March 2014
  • $100USD
    Walking on the Ceiling

    Become a part of the Brew Werks legend and leave your mark on a decorated ceiling tile, painted by local artist Christopher Stackowitz of cstackstudios. When people look up to drain their beer, they'll see you looking back at em.

    8 out of 15 claimed
    Estimated delivery: May 2014
  • $100USD
    Wall of Fame

    Love seeing your name on walls? With this one you get a glass, a coaster, a limited edition screen printed T-shirt, PLUS your name on our founding supporter wall. Boom!

    14 out of 20 claimed
    Estimated delivery: April 2014

    Sandwich Glory

    With the help of our Culinary Ninja, craft your own delicious grilled cheese sandwich and name it after you, your business, your spouse, just about anybody or anything. Includes everything in the Mug Clubbing level.

    5 out of 5 claimed
    Estimated delivery: May 2014

    Mac & Cheese Glory

    With the help of our Culinary Ninja, craft your own mac & cheese dish and name it after you, your business, your spouse, just about anybody or anything. Includes everything in the Mug Clubbing level.

    5 out of 5 claimed
    Estimated delivery: May 2014

    Flatbread Glory

    Glory seems to have slipped from your fingers as the Grilled Cheese, Beer, and Mac & Cheese options got snatched up. But never fear, you still have an opportunity to achieve greatness and leave your mark by working with our Culinary Ninja to craft a flatbread pizza and name it after you, your business, your spouse, just about anybody or anything. Includes everything in the Mug Clubbing level.

    5 out of 5 claimed
    Estimated delivery: June 2014

    Beer Glory

    Ever wanted your beer on tap? Work with the Master of the Brew to craft your own limited edition beer and name it after you, your business, your spouse, just about anybody. You can even design the label! Includes everything in the Mug Clubbing level.

    5 out of 5 claimed
    Estimated delivery: May 2014
  • $750USD
    Brewer for a Day

    Take your Beer Glory to a higher level...not only do you get to create a beer, you get to brew it too! Create a beer, name it, and brew it up with our Master of the Brew then inscribe your name on the brew vessel for immortality. Includes everything in the Beer Glory level and yes, your beer will go on tap as part of our rotation.

    1 out of 3 claimed
    Estimated delivery: May 2014
  • $1,500USD
    Master the Brew

    Learn about brewing over 3 days in the brewhouse with the Master of the Brew, craft a beer, receive your own home brew kit to continue your experience at home, plus everything in the Mug Clubbing level..

    0 out of 3 claimed
    Estimated delivery: August 2014
  • $3,000USD
    Bring the Brew Werks Home

    Welcome the Master of the Brew and our Culinary Ninja into your home for a unique Brew Werks experience featuring a custom menu and limited edition beers crafted especially for this dinner and available nowhere else. Good for up to 12 people anywhere in the MIchiana area.

    0 out of 2 claimed
    Estimated delivery: August 2014
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