How to Turn Your Home Brewing Hobby into a Business

how to turn home brewing into a business

Michael Langone, the entrepreneur behind HopBox, combined a variety of different skills and interests when launching his home beer brewing business.

Langone started brewing while attending college in Syracuse, N.Y.  Back then he was studying to become an architect, and didn’t expect to make brewing into a career.

Langone was frustrated with the lack of decent home brewing supplies available. He would end up storing the large bucket and other supplies in his closet or basement instead of the kitchen. As a result, he would not brew very often.

how to turn home brewing into a business

So he used his knowledge of design, brewing, and woodworking to create something new – the HopBox (pictured above). In an interview with author and infomercial personality Matthew Lesko he explains:

“Looking back now, it makes a surprising amount of sense. I was just coming out of architecture school sort of with an eye for design, love for woodworking, and a home brewing hobby. And it all kind of came together.”

HopBox now offers various home-brewing kits and supplies handmade from rustic pine. The kits are intended to scale for various sized kitchens in homes and apartments and add an element of style beyond the basic kits available from other retailers.

Langone turned to Kickstarter to fund the launch of HopBox. He completed a successful fundraising campaign at the end of May. The kits are currently available for pre-sale and are scheduled to begin shipping in July.

Langone is also now in business with lifelong friend Matt Gorman, who he introduced to brewing a couple of years ago. The pair hopes give even more people the satisfaction they say comes with home brewing using their stylized kits and supplies.

On the HopBox website Langone says:

“I wanted to inspire people to brew, to experiment with new recipes, to feel the satisfaction that comes with sharing something you have made with family and friends. I also realized I wanted to make it more than a hobby – I wanted to make it my career. So I went all in! I quit my day job, emptied my accounts, and started living out my dream.”


Annie Pilon Annie Pilon is a Senior Staff Writer for Small Business Trends, covering entrepreneur profiles, interviews, feature stories, community news and in-depth, expert-based guides. When she’s not writing she can be found exploring all that her home state of Michigan has to offer.

4 Reactions
  1. I think that this is a classic story where one can really make a killing as long as he has the passion for it. It’s nice to know how he began and how he came through even with all the trials he has to face.

    • Very true! Passion is often a key ingredient for success and he happened to be able to use a few different passions with this particular startup.