12 Oct Great Location and Great Business Plan Set Up Four Day Ray Brewing for Success
This past weekend I was one of the lucky few hundred who got to attend the first grand opening of Four Day Ray Brewing. If that name doesn’t sound familiar then you haven’t been to many beer fests in the past year.
Four Day Ray has set up shop in Fishers, Indiana and is at a prime location! It’s near 116th street and 69 and about a block behind everyone’s favorite ice cream shop, Handles. The location is perfect for a quick stop off on your way home to get a Crowler filled with one of Four Day Ray’s house beers—(I recommend the Track Jumper IPA). It’s a nice, light, IPA that gives you a little bit of that delicious hoppy taste but not enough to wreck your pallet. What’s that? You have the kids with you? No problem! Four Day Ray is an all ages venue. Don’t you worry though, if drinking beer around kids isn’t your thing the entire upstairs is dedicated to 21 and over. Oh! And for those of you with fur babies, the patio will be dog friendly as well. Expect the patio to be completed towards the end of October.
While I was enjoying the gorgeous interior and the fancy spread (all in house, by the way…no catering was done for this event) I was able to speak with some of the key players of Four Day Ray.
First up is Brian Graham (Founder and President) – he’s kind of a big deal. He’s part of the 3 families that are involved with Four Day Ray. Those 3 families, in no particular order, are the Graham family, Troyer family, and Welsh family. They had a vision for Fishers and Four Day Ray and Brian was able to give me a little insight into that vision:
Tyler: Why did you choose Fishers for your location?
Brian: The Nickel Plate District is doing a nice job of building the neighborhood up and giving it that village feel. They have apartments going up and businesses coming in, and probably in about the next year they will have anywhere between 3,500 to 4,000 people working in this area.
Tyler: So Four Day Ray will be family friendly. What was the deciding factor on that decision?
Brian: We want families to come in. We know that Fishers is a family community and we knew we had to embrace that.
Tyler: With patio season almost over in Indiana, will guests be able to enjoy the patio in the colder months?
Brian: Yes, our patio should be done around the end of October and we will have an awning that we will be able to retract out to protect them from the elements and we will also have gas heaters. So we should be able to use it through November.
Tyler: Is there anything that people should expect when coming to Four Day Ray?
Brian: Yeah, we are going to have a great food menu here, and if you don’t like beer we will have wine and spirits as well. If you’re going to come here and hang out you’re going to need food. We are a gastro pub and our menu is a globally inspired menu. We have about 12 different countries that inspire the menu in total.
Tyler: Will the spirits that you carry here be local spirits?
Brian: Yeah! We will be featuring Cardinal Spirits, Hotel Tango, and we’ve been talking to Broken Beaker as well. We are all about local. We have Hotel Tango and Cardinal Spirits on the menu right now. We’ve also been collaborating with Cardinal Spirits to build out our craft cocktail menu.
So, as you can see, a lot of great thing will be happening at four Day Ray when they open on October 19th.
Next I was able to sit down with the head brewer of Four Day Ray, Mitch Ackerman. Mitch has a very interesting story and huge plans for what is next, and what people can expect from Four Day Ray.
Tyler: So what’s your story, Mitch?
Mitch: Well I’m originally from Ohio and got my start at Thirsty Dog Brewing. Then I moved out to a small brewery in Lake Havasu, Arizona called Mudshark Brewery, but I missed the Midwest and I’ve always wanted to come back. So I met Brian when he was imagining the project and I’ve been involved since then.
Tyler: Are the house beers that Four Day Ray offers your personal recipes?
Mitch: Oh no, well not all of them. The stout is mine, the blonde is Brian, the IPA is a combo, and the coffee blonde was my idea inspired by Stone Brewing.
Tyler: What are some of the beers that people can look forward to from Four Day Ray?
Mitch: Well we are going to do a lot of different things. The idea is Session beers that have a lot of flavor to them. That’s where the idea started. That’s not saying that we won’t have big beers. I have a Russian imperial stout on deck, a quad on deck and scotch ale on deck. I like to sit down and have more than one pint, so that’s where the ideas come from. What I don’t want to have is for the beer to taste watery, so expect a lot of flavor and lower alcohol, anywhere from 3.2% to 6%. That way you can come here for dinner and have a couple of pints and still be able to go home.
Mitch really showed a lot of passion for his craft, and it comes through in his recipes. You won’t be disappointed!
Of course I saved the best for last! Meet Brooke Killey, the Marketing Director of Four Day Ray.
Tyler: What kind of experience can people expect from Four Day Ray?
Brooke: Well they can expect great cuisine from our chef, Andrew Miller. It is going to pair great with our beers. We have a great brewer and a great chef and they are working together to make sure that everything pairs well together.
Tyler: Is the food here all prepared in house?
Brooke: Everything that was here tonight was all prepared fresh in house and from scratch. A lot of the plates that you saw that were being passed around will be our starters. Eventually we also want to get into catering. So you are also kind of getting a feel for what to expect from our catering.
Tyler: Will your beer also be an available option for your catering?
Brooke: We are still figuring that piece out.
Tyler: What about distributing out to the public? Any plans?
Brooke: Yes that will happen as soon as we are up and running. We’ll be doing distribution, keg sales, and canning. We are looking to start out with the Track Jumper IPA, Laplander Blonde, and the Doonright Scottish Ale.
Tyler: Four Day Ray is sporting a lot of taps! What other kind of beers can patrons expect here?
Brooke: We’re going to have some guest taps that will be more of a European variety. Something that is more authentic and true to style. We’ll also have additional bottles and cans available for purchase. We hope to have around 6-8 taps to start with and then we’ll move up to 19 that will have some seasonal rotations as they come in, based on what people are wanting.
Four Day Ray opened their doors to a very welcoming neighborhood, and it certainly looks like they have full intentions of returning the hospitality to everyone who comes through those doors. They will officially open their doors to the public soon (final date to be announced). Do yourself a favor and go ahead and plan that night out, it won’t matter if it is with friends or family because everyone is welcome to come and enjoy some amazing food and spectacular beer. When you have those two things and a warm, inviting, and gorgeous place to enjoy it, it’s easy to see the amount of passion that Four Day Ray is bringing to the craft beer community and the community of Fishers.