Veneta farm begins making craft beer

Veneta farm begins making craft beer

Plough Monday, an organic hops farm and brewing company, brewed its first batch of beer in April.

Norm Vidoni and Charlie Whedbee leased a 1,400-square-foot building on Jeans Road from the city of Veneta for their microbrewery. The building, which used to be a water treatment plant, was ideal for their purposes, Vidoni said. “It had floor drains, the right electrical, water pipes. ... I was pretty excited.”

After getting the necessary approvals not only from the city but from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Vidoni and Whedbee began assembling the necessary equipment from a variety of sources, all the way from shining new brewing tanks to second­hand barrels labeled “New Old Lompoc Brewery” and a heat exchanger labelled “milk in” and ”milk out.” (Dairies that have modernized their facilities have been a useful source of secondhand equipment for start-up brewers, Vidoni and Whedbee said. And, Vidoni added, it’s often better quality than what’s available new.)

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