George and Dawn Prusha are the go-to people for home brewers across Loudoun.
Their store in Leesburg, Kettles & Grains, sells everything a home brewer could need—hops, barley, malt, and all the right equipment. Whether it’s stout, pilsner, or cider, and whether it’s a simple carboy or a complex operation, it’s the place to go.
“They stockpile such a variety of things that you would want at the home brewing level that there was really no reason to go anywhere else,” said Patrick Steffans, whose avid home brewing led to launching Loudoun Brewing Company in Leesburg. “Plus I wanted to support them as a local business, and there was really no reason not to support them, because anything I was looking to get, George and Dawn were there to talk.”
When they started home brewing, George Prusha recalled, they had to get all their supplies in Frederick, MD. As craft brewing and home brewing exploded in Loudoun, distributors were looking for someone to sell brewing supplies here.
“We’d been talking about doing something for a while, and I had been a stay-at-home mom for 11 and a half years at that point, so we were ready,” Dawn Prusha said.
That was two years ago. Now, the shop does steady business with new and experienced home brewers alike, and when you buy from Kettles & Grains, the Prushas’ knowledge and experience comes with the purchase.
“I think with Internet sales, the first-time home brewer would probably never just order off the Internet and start doing it,” George said. “With the Internet, you order it, you’re stuck with it, it comes out horribly, and you never know why.”
Instead, shopping at Kettles & Grains is a foot in the door of Loudoun’s brewing scene, which is large, knowledgeable, entrepreneurial, and experimental.
“George is a home brewer, that’s how he got into the business, and that’s immediately evident in the way that he approaches his business,” Steffans said. “He has people come into this shop that may not have any experience with home brewing, so that kind of leaves it up to him to guide them through the process.”
Even experienced home brewers can learn and swap tips and techniques.
“He has a lot of advice on tap, so depending where you are in the maturity of your home brewing, he’s there to help you,” Steffans said. “He’s there to guide you along when it comes to recipe creation, or process, or anything related to just making good beer.” Even with his brewery open and growing and buying from wholesalers, Steffans and other brewers will swing by Kettles & Grains for small one-off orders or to experiment with new ideas.
It’s not just a good place for buying home brewing equipment—the shop also has hard-to-find beers from across the country.
“Everyone’s coming to our store for something unique they hadn’t seen before,” George Prusha said.
And Kettles & Grains offers workshops where participants can try out brewing on their equipment. People come for bonding, birthdays, bachelor parties, nights out, and even corporate teambuilding.
And the Prushas have an arrangement with a label-making company. Home brewers come to brew, bottle, and label on their equipment—creating custom brews for birthdays, weddings, or opening day at the ballpark.
And with all this, you can have something to eat and drink a beer while you brew.
“There’s a lot to the imagination, you could design your own beer, really,” George said. “It’s endless. It really is.”
Kettles & Grains is located at 161 Fort Evans Rd NE, Suite 100, in Leesburg. Learn more at kettlesandgrains.com.