ERIE, PA -- By the bottle, glass, or keg, Lavery's Brewing Company is making a name for itself in the world of craft beer.
Company president, Jason Lavery, has now been growing this company for nine years. He tells us the passion started when he was given a career changing gift, a beer home brew kit.
"about nine years ago that turned into an obsession and then every weekend getting better and better."
All of the Lavery's practice appears to be paying off. In October, Lavery's Liopar Oir won a gold medal at the Great American Beer Festival in Denver. The Erie brewery's Saison was one of only three beers to win a gold medal from the state of Pennsylvania.
Founded in 2009 and licensed in 2010, Lavery's brews, ferments, and carbonates about 310 gallons of beer per week.
Right in their own brew house in downtown Erie.
In 2014 they will double that number and production to produce about 620 gallons per week.
Jason explained to us that the opportunity to lead the growth of this business is one of the benefits of running your own company.
"nothing is either pushing you on or holding you back. You make your own boss and either fail or succeed on your own merits.
In addition to the increase in production, Lavery's opened a new pub adjacent to their brewery in September 2013. He now employs five bartenders, three part time cooks and a full time manager. Jason tells us that it is important to him that his employees share the same passion about craft beers that his company was founded on.
"we always try to hire people that care first and foremost about craft beer. We can then train them other things very easy once they have that basic love of craft beer as a passion"
Even with the increase in production and the new pub, Lavery's still remains active in both charities and the community.
Jason told me that is easy to remain motivated when you love what you do.
"Its hard work, and it's dirty work, but I wouldn't trade it for anything else."
As a result of that passion, Jason is now a nominee for the 2013 entrepreneur of the year.
The winner of the Entrepreneur Of The Year Award will be announce at the Economic Development Corporation's Dinner on January 23, 2014.