FROM A SMALL GARAGE
TO A BIG GARAGE
In 1994 Mark Ihrig read an article on a mid-west company that started the first internet Beer of the Month Club. Entrepreneur genes sparked. Thinking we have all this great beer in my own backyard, I love beer and I’ve got to be part of this. So in the garage he started The Micro Beer Club in 1995, and relates like many an entrepreneur story begins. Later he launched Cellars Wine Club in 1999, which is still active today. In 2001 Mark started Boxing Cat Brewery, a 3 BBL system he bought from Whidbey Brewing, dabbling with that for a couple of years, the timing was not right. So, the brewery was put on hold while he focused on the wine club, but the passion for the industry never ended.
Holly Ihrig worked at Microsoft beginning January, 1986 before they went public and worked there over two decades. During this time she did some side Consulting with Yacht brokers in the Pacific Northwest. In 2008 she kicked up a Wedding Planning business, but frugal were the times to last only a year. Holly retired as a Sr. Consultant in 2012 so she and Mark could focus on doing something together.
Aligning our unique strengths, Mark’s ambitious entrepreneurial DNA, a dream of owning a Brewery combined with Holly’s enthusiastic marketing skills, the vision for Sumerian Brewing was born. For Sumerian Brewing, it’s where business meets pleasure. Together manifesting a vision, husband and wife partners, exercising teamwork and collaboration, a milestone complete was achieved.
Our goal was to carefully construct the brewery for the future, in other words, expansion. In a startup you can’t do a great job of everything, you have to prioritize what is critically important “product and place”, and what is “nice to have.” Reformed perfectionists, we didn’t waste time on “nice to have.” Even with the helping skilled hands of our brew master, helping do construction all while perfecting recipes, it took longer to create our space and open, but we wanted to come out of the gate with eyes on the future, to grow.
Our commitment is to brew great tasting, quality, and impressionable West Coast style beers. Big, bold in character and flavorful. We have an exceptional brew team, sales team, pub manager and staff. We hope you enjoy our beer, brewery and come back to visit us time and time again!
Cheers / Prost
Mark & Holly