By Valentin Mauduit
Since its launch in June 2020, Nicolas Krafft has come a long way. He had rebuilt a small room in the rue du Dr Castaing in Montmirail. Without much pretension, he launched his craft beer with a tank and a few square meters dedicated to the bar. Two years later, success is there. The businessman has succeeded in his conversion.
A 640 m² room
Looking for a place to expand, he has just found his happiness in Vibraye.
I had been looking for La Ferté, Montmirail and the surrounding area for over a year.
During a conversation, he talks about his research to Dominique Flament, mayor of Vibraye. While the pharmacy moved to avenue Michel Verdier, the elected official remembered the search for Nicolas and put him in contact with the owner. The purchase of the old furniture store was quickly finalized.
Only the enormous surface of 640 m² was not a primary desire for the brewer who just wanted to expand his production space. So another project got involved. ” To keep, a shop and an active showcase, I decided to open a wine cellar and delicatessen. To enter the premises as a client, it will be necessary to wait until early 2023.
If it is necessary to plan for the moment, as the work seems substantial, Nicolas knows where he is going. “There, there will be the cellar part, there, the spirits like the whiskeys. It is a product that I sell very well. »
The Montmiraillais can easily see themselves offering aperitif cakes that are out of the ordinary (like cashew nuts with wasabi), and making little baskets garnished. But also of tea and herbal tea, “it works very well on our little shelf in Montmirail. It is a product abandoned by the supermarket while there are real amateurs. We will continue to exploit it”.
Tea, wine, cakes
His cellar, he does not want it luxurious.
These will be nice little wines, which are not found in supermarkets because the winegrower does not produce the quantities for them. I’m also going to have wine BIBs (Bag-in-Box), it’s in full development.
Behind the shop, a room dedicated to events, “if people want to privatize for a dinner. We can also organize tastings…” On the other hand, no consumption on site. He wants his bar of Montmirail remains the reference point.
In this gigantic space, Nicolas can even afford to keep a place for packaging dedicated to e-commerce. “I send a lot of products through the Internet, especially tea,” he says.
Let’s go to the side of the reserve, where the stock of malt has already arrived. “It’s purely speculative because it’s going up all the time. Then another room will be dedicated to the stock of finished and unfinished products, as well as a cold room. At the end, in the old garage, the manufacturing laboratory.
The walls covered with sandwich panels to meet food standards, and some electrical work later, the first hectoliters of Mons Mirabilis will flow afloat.
To hold this shop, while he is at the bar in Montmirail, Nicolas needs to recruit. “I would like a clever, curious and greedy wine merchant. And a wine merchant rather than an oenologist. Clever, because I want him to capture the desire of the customer, to advise him on associations…” To accompany him in production, the brewer would like an apprentice. “But there’s no pure training, so I’ll see…”
In this space, also a hot room that accelerates the fermentation. Speed up production, that’s all that matters Nicolas, and it’s going to become very urgent. “I have nothing left to sell. There are orders that I cannot fulfill,” he regrets. This place of production will also be much more ergonomic with tanks of 650 liters against 200 currently.
In August, he recorded record attendance at the bar, “I made +70%”. Or like his special beer dedicated to the Commanderie d’Arville, “it turns out really well, but I took it out of the shop to keep some for their establishment”.
However, “making volume does not interest me”, he specifies. Basically, brewing beer was a pleasure and it still is for Nicolas. Now he wants it to stay that way. Especially that he teeming with ideas for new recipes. Like this blue beer with spirulina (microalgae) which tempts him a lot.
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