Jackalope Brewing Company
WHEN THE LAW DEGREE IS PLAN B: HOW LAW-STUDENT-TURNED-BREWER BAILEY SPAULDING AND BIZ PARTNER STEVE WRIGHT BUILT THE JACKALOPE BREWING COMPANY.
NASHVILLE SINCE 2006 (BAILEY) AND 2009 (STEVE)
For Vermont native Bailey Spaulding, starting a new hobby while attending Vanderbilt Law School quickly altered the plans she’d had in mind. “In law school I started home brewing and quickly realized brewing beer was a lot more fun than being a lawyer,” she laughs. “I spent most of law school dreaming it up.”
Though Spaulding got her degree “just in case,” it was pretty soon after her first home brewed batch that she realized she wanted this to be a career. “Really quickly it connected with me and all of the things that I love to do,” she says.
“There was such ambition behind it that I knew it was going to happen,” says business partner Steve Wright. The pair met shortly after Steve’s move to town in 2009, and he quickly became enamored with the idea and with Nashville’s entrepreneurial spirit.
The brewery launched in 2011, and now offers a vast variety of beers, from the Snowman Mocha Stout to their Lovebird Strawberry/Raspberry Hefeweizen. In a town full of connoisseurs, Jackalope was one of the pioneers in the Nashville craft beer movement. The second brewery to open in the city, they've experienced such demand and success that they're currently planning an expansion.
Along with that fun, Jackalope is dedicated to being a part of the community, which includes a taproom open for visitors daily. “We all know we’re lucky to make beer for a living and we think it’s important to give back and be involved,” they share. In 2017, the Tennessean reported the company has donated over $35,000 to 40 nonprofits.
And though they may seem an engrained part of Nashville’s flourishing craft beer world today, it wasn’t always that easy. “I think the most important thing you learn in starting a business is that you have to constantly adapt,” Bailey laughs, thinking back to days when, they share, challenges included constantly manually watering down their chiller to get their equipment through hot Nashville summers.
Though those challenges are fortunately things of the past, that same passion for their craft and desire to learn at every step continue to motivate them. “Some of my favorite days and memories have been the ones that maybe haven’t even started that great,” Steve shares, “but somehow in the course of the day things come together and it ends up alright and we learn something and get better each day.”
Cheers to that.
Connect with them on their website: http://jackalopebrew.com
Follow them @jackalopebrew