Founder- Michael A Knaub
Mike is far from being new to the brewing scene. His 1st exposure with brewing was back in 1978. His brother Bill bought a can of extract that was for making a European Lager. Bill made the beer and Mike was amazed at how it tasted good and was made at home! Mike spent several years trying all kinds of different beers. Back in the early 80’s, to try different styles one had to try a lot of imports, there were very few Microbreweries back then. It was around 1985 when he first tried brewing his own beer. This was around the same time Jim Koch launched Samuel Adams. Sierra Nevada was also a new microbrewery back around 1983. He tried brewing several batches but didn’t have much success. He gave up trying to brew until several years later. He discovered his water from his well was bad. He fixed the water problem and started filtering the water. He then started brewing again around 1990 and was making much better beer and it started a long passion in brewing beer.
Mike then studied everything he could and read many books, subscribed to brewing magazines, learning how to brew beer. Back then in the pre internet days you actually had to do research and read up on how to do things. There wasn’t anywhere near the info available to homebrewers like there is today. He Founded the York Area Homebrewers Association in 1993 with Vince Shumski, and Jeff and Becky Kelly. He also opened a homebrew shop called Starview Brew. He introduced a lot of York and Lancaster county people to brewing and helped them brew beer as well.
He entered and won the 1994 Hail to Ale national club competition with an IPA for the York club. This was sponsored by the American Homebrewers Association. This was back before an IPA was the “in beer” as it is so popular today. Back then most people had no clue what an IPA was. Entered and placed 2nd in the same comp in 1995. Entered the National Homebrew Competition in 1995 with an American style Barleywine and won a Bronze Medal. Entered the 1996 War of the Worts Competition with a German Style Helles, (a light style German Lager) and won first place in the category and 2nd place in the Best of Show Round. Took the Beer Judge Certification Exam in 1994 and became a BJCP certified Judge (this means he’s a certifiable beer nut. He started brewing 5 gallon extract batches back in 1990, went to all grain brewing 12 gallon batches around 1993. In 2012 he went to a three tier gravity system which allows him to brew 24 gals at a time. Built a walk in cooler two years ago for aging and fermenting his beers in. His passion in brewing is for a lot of the European style Lagers. He has brewed over 25 different styles of beer and has brewed over 323 batches of beer and counting.
Mike founded Starview Brewing Company in 1995. Had a homebrew recipe contract brewed by Dubuque brewing company from Dubuque Iowa. They made his Chickies Rock Cream Ale and he had 500 BBL’s made and sold it between 1995 -1997. Learned a lot about the beer business from this experience. This was around the same time Victory Brewing and Troeg’s Brewing companies started their business. He learned a lot of things the hard way from his first attempt at building a brewing company before. He had no idea back then what it required to build a business other than he knew how to brew beer. The company bought an old historic building in Marietta Pa, right beside Chickies Rock. The goal was to renovate and build a large Brewery/Pub there. The problem was the amount of money required to fix up the building and put everything into place made it way too expensive of a project. He had this vision of another type of setup like Appalachian brewing company in Harrisburg. Problem was raising that kind of money did not happen.
Mike’s dream of building and running a brewery again was reborn in 2013. Mike had been brewing for quite a while and sharing his beer with friends. One of his friends James Taylor says Mike you should start a brewery. Mike just chuckled and said been there tried that. James got him thinking again though, a lot of breweries are opening and being very successful today. There is a much larger amount of people drinking craft beer as compared to back in the mid 90’s. So, Mike wrote a business plan and now he’s ready to try again.