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Roughly eight years ago, when owning a brewery was beginning to seem like a real possibility for Urban South cofounder Jacob Landry, he sat down with The New Brewer’s annual list of brewery-production numbers. With a pen, he circled every brewery that had grown to 15,000 barrels within five years. That was the goal he had for his New Orleans–based brewery-in-planning, and he tried to decipher how each of these breweries had accomplished it. He identified three common threads: good beer, good distribution partners, and good marketing.
Landry bet that Urban South could hit that 15,000-barrel target in five years. Fast forward, and the brewery did it in less than four, and it did so while selling beer only in Louisiana. Through the rapid growth phase, Landry and fellow cofounder Kyle Huling learned a lesson that continues to guide the brewery: Have an airtight business plan—but be willing to revise it constantly.