When Vance Sabbe lost his job in the technology industry in December 2012, he drowned his sorrows in beer.
Well, not really, but he did take his passion for brewing craft beer to the next level. He, along with partner Rick Aggen, opened Beer By Design Brewery in Northglenn at the end of June.
“According to the Colorado Brewers Guild, the Front Range is the largest craft brewing market in the U.S. We are very pleased to welcome Beer by Design to Northglenn, and to add their company name to the list of more than 70 Colorado craft brewers,” said Debbie Tuttle, Northglenn’s economic development manager.
Sabbe was introduced to home-brewed beer in the early 1990s by a coworker. He developed a brew kit and began selling supplies to home brewers.
He also ran Rocky Mountain Home Brew business in Westminster for a few years before selling it in the late 1990s.
“It did well for itself, but I couldn’t quit my day job,” said Sabbe, who lives in unincorporated Adams County.
Meanwhile, he researched the brewery industry and imagined the possibilities of opening one.
Losing his job kicked started making his dream into a reality.
He began securing investors and got Aggen, who used to be his neighbor, to be his partner.
“He’s like a kid in a candy shop when it comes to the brewery — the passion is there,” Sabbe said.
The men held a grand opening for Beer By Design, 2100 E. 112th St., on June 28. The 5,000-foot facility has a tap room and brewery. Tours are available daily upon request.
Sabbe said what he makes is craft beer. He uses a special process that allows his brews to be “session” beer — low in alcohol and more drinkable.
“You can sit down and finish more than one and not be overpowered by the alcohol or sugar,” he said.
He said the finest ingredients are used in his beers, without chemicals in processing or for preservation. He said another key to the great taste of his product is the water.
“We strictly use Northglenn water, which comes from Standley Lake, which is water from the Rocky Mountains,” he said.
Beer By Design features Copper Mountain Pale Ale, Wild Mountain Wheat, Cascade Mountain IPA and Alpine Mountain Amber Ale.
While the facility can seat about 50 at the bar, and nearly the same at 10 tables, Sabbe said their business plan is aggressive and that they want to be more than a local hangout; they want to be the local brewery for bars and restaurants.
But, he said, he doesn’t want to tap at any locations outside a 10-miles radius because he thinks that’s where other breweries go wrong.
“They stretch themselves too thin,” he said. “We are real cautious about that; we want to make sure we never run out of beer for our restaurants and bars.”
Beer by Design is open 2-8 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays, 2-10 p.m. Fridays, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturdays and 2-6 p.m. Sundays.
More information about its products can be found online at www.beerbydesign.com.