Young Guns: Starting a Brewery on a Shoestring


Ever poured yourself a Bengali Tiger? Maybe had some Sweet Action? If you’re a beer lover in the New York region, it’s more than likely.

Bengali Tiger and Sweet Action are the two of the most popular lagers from Six Point Craft Ales, a startup brewery in the Red Hook section of Brooklyn, New York. The beer enthusiast/entrepreneur behind this locally well-known ale house is 32-year-old Shane Welsh.

Raised in Wisconsin, Welsh decided to come East, where he saw a hole in the market.

“You have to go to an area where you believe people will be receptive. The craft beer scene has been strong on the West Coast for 20-25 years, and you have breweries in the Midwest that have been going strong for 10-15 years,” Welsh explains. “New York had catching up to do.”

For more on Welsh’s innovative take on the brewery business, watch the video. And if you know a promising startup, e-mail us at

Six Shooter Q&A with Shane Welsh, founder of Six Point Craft Ales:

Q. What are your three biggest tips to entrepreneurs?

1. Your business will be a manifestation of your intentions. Therefore, make sure you are going into business for all the right reasons.

2. Be prepared to surrender yourself completely to your will feel vulnerable at times. Prepare yourself mentally for that.

3. You can only accomplish your dream with the help of others. Find good people and trust them to do important work. If you are truly passionate and sincere in your endeavor, others will rally behind you.

Q. Where were you the moment you thought of your business plan?

In the basement of my best friend Aaron's Stumpf's apartment, hunched over a brew kettle.

Q.What was the one thing you didn't know that you had to bluff your way through?

Hmmm...just about every aspect of the business, really! At 25-years-old and running a startup brewery in NYC, I was in way over my head.

Q. Who is your role model or inspiration?

My parents.

Q. What recommendations do you have for entrepreneurs trying to keep their company lean?

Ask yourself, "Do I need this, or do I want this?" Get rid of what you want; hold onto what you need.

Q. Do you love beer? Why?

Of course. Because it is yummy, and it makes things silly.