Optimum: Barrage Brewing Co.: Turning a Thirsty Pastime into a Thriving Beer Business
Barrage Brewing Co.: Turning a Thirsty Pastime into a Thriving Beer Business
Barrage Brewing isn’t a cookie-cutter craft beer maker. And with the help of Optimum, it’s tapping new territory.
For Steve Pominski, Jr., beer has always been a hobby—really.
As a home brewer, Pominski honed his craft for more than 20 years, sharing his creations with family and friends. Then, in 2009, he and his wife decided to convert their garage into a larger family room, equipped with an 18-foot bar and a double-tap system for his homebrews. Over time, Pominski’s place became a regular hangout for friends, and the bar in the garage became known as “The Barrage” (a combination of the words “bar” and “garage”). Friends raved about his beer and encouraged him to sell it.
Barrage Brewing Co. was formed in 2011 with Pominski as its founder and head brewer, but it took two years of planning, fundraising, development, and construction before the Farmingdale, N.Y. microbrewery opened to the public in January 2014. The preparations included getting his online service infrastructure in place to launch and power the pub. Steve chose Optimum without any hesitation.
Optimum: A do-it-all solution
Pominski credits his Optimum Online high-speed internet, cable, and phone services with helping to draw customers, track sales, and enhance security. With faster internet speeds and enhanced email capabilities, Barrage’s website is a successful front door to the company’s news and brews.
And that’s important, since his small-batch menu is always changing. From Fairy Tale Red Hop Ale , an Irish-style red blend, to Yada Yada Yada , a brown ale infused with Snickers candy bars, “we’re always doing something new,” Pominski says. “People like it when they come to our tasting room and see something different than they did the last time they were here.”
Once inside the brewery, a large-screen TV is a big attraction, especially for patrons who want to watch football games on Sundays or just check the local news and weather on News 12. Since Optimum offers the flexibility to choose a TV package with content that best fits a business needs, including one specifically designed for bars and restaurants, it was easy for Pominski to cater to his beer-drinking demographic.
Powered by Optimum
Barrage’s POS system—invoices, checks, and sales receipts—and security camera system, run through Optimum Online. As a small business owner, Pominski needs to be able to track what’s selling, and how the business is doing, in real-time. With such a critical connection, the brewery can’t afford extended downtime. But with Optimum 24/7 local support and, with its Same-day Service Guarantee, Pominski adds, “I’ve never lost a day of business.”
Expansion on tap
Beginning in February 2016, Pominski plans to produce five times the amount of beer he currently makes by moving from a one-barrel system to a five-barrel operation. He also is eyeing a westward push to expand distribution into other boroughs and Manhattan. And bottling and canning could be next. As the business grows, Pominski will rely on Optimum services to help keep up with heightened orders and delivery schedules.
According to Pominski, the time savings, reliability, and peace of mind achieved through Optimum has other benefits, too, freeing him to summon the inspiration behind all of those new brews yet to come. “When my friends challenge me with, ‘Have you ever tried this?’ ” I want to be able to say, ‘Sure, why not.’”