Overflow Brewing Company, a recipe for success

Photo: Sean Sisk Photography

In 2010, while sitting in a cold rink watching their boys play hockey, Overflow Brewing Company co-founders Brad Fennell and Mitch Veilleux discovered they shared a strong appreciation for craft beer. During the countless hours spent in arenas and traveling to tournaments, the two hockey dads often found themselves discussing the topic of “someday” owning their own brewery. Forming between Brad and Mitch was a friendship that would one day serve as the foundation of a successful business partnership.

(From left to right): Overflow co-founders, Brad and Mitch

On November 1st, 2018, that dream, and passion project finally came to life and Overflow’s distinctive taproom served its inaugural pint!

Overflow Brewing Company is not only known for their high-quality, handcrafted beers, but for providing customers with an exceptional “brewery experience”. The establishment houses a 20-barrel (2000 litre) brewhouse, onsite beer store and a taproom which serves as an event space that can hold up to 400 people. Altogether, Overflow stretches out over 15,000 square feet.

“Brad and I had been looking for a new career path that would challenge every skill we had acquired over 20+ years in large corporate roles,” Mitch explains. “Building a new brewery was something so completely different from what we had been doing that we needed a name to symbolize the shift in our lives and really represent this new venture.”

A quick Google search of “challenge and skill” returned one word that would become the foundation for not only the new business, but would become a concept that they wanted to live by every day.

“The term ‘Flow’ describes an enhanced mental state of happiness that can only be reached by applying all of your physical and mental capabilities while performing an activity you are truly passionate about,” says Brad. “A person who is fully immersed and engaged with this energized focus will experience a heightened level of happiness that will drive them to continue to exhaustion. We knew at that point that the name had to stem from this word. For us, the name “Overflow” represents a possible state beyond Flow (if one exists).”

Overflow’s head brewer, Andrew Powers, was the addition that sealed the fate of their current success. Andrew not only shares the same enthusiasm for the product as Brad and Mitch do, but his experience, professionalism and award-winning track record makes him an up-and-coming head brewer in the Canadian craft brewing scene.

Together, the team has produced an extraordinary introductory lineup of five beer types that maintain traditional style characteristic with a hint of Overflow flare!

“We feel that it’s important to have fun in brewing and designing new recipes, but that it’s also about respecting the styles and making well-balanced beer that is approachable to anyone,” says Brad.

“Roger That” (Extra Pale Ale) is the lightest beer that did exceptionally well in the summer, while the darker beer, “Final Bow” (Porter), was popular in the fall and throughout the holidays. Overflow’s award-winning American Pale Ale (Bangkok Crosswalk) has a loyal following, and Rearview (Pilsner) and Landlocked (IPA) have been consistent sellers. Much like the name of the company, each beer has a story around its name… but you’ll have to stop in to ask Brad and Mitch about those.

A key differentiator of Overflow Brewing Company is their taproom event space. At just under 3,800 square feet, the taproom is arguably one of the largest in Ontario and is quickly becoming one of Ottawa’s premier live music venues featuring the Overflow Concert Series. Whether customers want to sample the beer before they buy it, enjoy live entertainment or couple their cold one with some BBQ fusion-inspired food from Redneck Eatz’s food truck, the taproom provides a tasting and listening experience like no other!

“This large capacity room lends itself well to events of all kinds including fundraisers, private functions, live performances and more," says Matt Sobb, Overflow’s entertainment coordinator and Canadian music industry veteran. “We continue to work on expanding the taproom’s relationship with local talent and growing an exceptional lineup of live music entertainment every week."

Overflow is planning on announcing some exciting concerts and will be introducing a few new beer styles in 2019.  Be sure to visit their website to find out more or follow them on social media so you don't miss out on plenty of exciting announcements.