How do you need to reinvent your business to survive? That is a question that today’s guest is daily asking to continue bringing beer to his customers and the local community. Michael Kora is the Founder & Lead Brewer of Montavilla Brew Works in Portland, Oregon. In this conversation, he shares how he’s reinvented his business during a global pandemic while honoring what works best for the beer’s brand and reputation. From his early days drumming and studying Music Performance and Composition to his days of homebrewing and honing his craft beer, Michael’s entrepreneurial journey has uniquely prepared him for producing great beer and staying present to the needs of today.

Topics & Time Codes

  • 0:00 – Introduction to Getting Work To Work
  • 0:37 – Introduction to Michael Kora, Montavilla Brew Works
  • 1:41 – Michael’s endless curiosity for making life better everyday
  • 3:32 – An ode to music: a beer lover’s origin story
  • 5:25 – The drummers who sparked his passion to play the drums
  • 6:54 – Neal Peart and how holding a stick can change everything
  • 8:19 – How studying the drums gave him the discipline needed for brewing beer
  • 9:46 – The role of honest feedback in learning and perfecting recipes
  • 11:06 – How the world of music trained him to receive feedback
  • 12:17 – Michael’s journey from homebrewing to owning a business
  • 16:14 – The power of connections and relationships
  • 16:52 – Learning to manage people and other growth opportunities
  • 18:10 – How business was looking prior to COVID-19 and how things shifted in 2020
  • 19:57 – What it takes to go from delivering beer in kegs to cans
  • 21:04 – Chris gets curious about mobile canning systems
  • 23:09 – Montavilla Brew Works’ approach to branding and labels for cans
  • 25:41 – The importance of having one foot in the future
  • 26:34 – How planning for the future has shifted from growth to survival
  • 28:04 – Honest experimentation and maintaining the brand’s reputation
  • 30:18 – How brewing has affected his drumming
  • 32:34 – How people can support Montavilla Brew Works and where they can buy their beer
  • 35:20 – Rush, The Who, and other bands that are on his playlist

Show Links

Montavilla Brew Works!

Where You Can Find Their Beer!

Michael’s Early Supporters!

Bands, Musicians, Songs, and More!

Chris Martin Studios!