Towson University biology major and Hop Theory CEO Bobby Gattuso, inspired by college students’ lack of cash, has raised $25,000 on Kickstarter to develop flavor-augmenting sachets to elevate average suds into craft beer.
“We blend hops, fruit peels and spices that enable you to customize your beer at home and at the bar,” Gattuso said of his do-it-yourself (DIY) approach. “Each blend is hand crafted in biodegradable sachets that you drop at the bottom of your pint glass and pour in your beer of choice. The flavors imparted in the sachet transfuse your light beer into a craft-inspired beer.”
Beginning in July, Hop Theory plans to introduce sachets containing orange peel coriander and Cascade hops. Gattuso hopes to follow up with raspberry, pumpkin and double IPA versions. One pouch will contain 12 sachets at a suggested retail price of $14.95, and Gattuso says each sachet can transform up to four 12-ounce beers, which works out to an economical 31-cent upgrade.
“I love the craft beer industry,” he enthused. “As a college student myself, I noticed that the beers I loved were to far out of reach financially for the average college kid on a budget. But it’s hard to go back to budget brews once you get a taste of better beer.”
While presently studying only biology, Gattuso may just start taking classes in the College of Business and Economics. He’s developed a love of business while working hard to balance school and work.
“Being a student in the biological sciences has greatly helped me in my problem-solving and attention-to-detail abilities,” he remarked. “In class, we research and apply theories and logic to better understand biology everyday. Even my company name, Hop Theory, was created to pay tribute to the classes I took at Towson University. It’s one Theory of my own.
“In the morning, I am a student, but by night I am running the business. I must admit Albert S. Cook [Library] has also been my office the last few semesters with [my increased] work demands! I’m learning how to better balance both each and everyday.”
A non-traditional student in the Jess and Mildred Fisher College of Science and Mathematics, Gattuso has been able to take full advantage of resources that are available to all TU students.
“Towson University has been really supportive in me for being a non-traditional student,” he said. “I am an active member of the Student Launch Pad at Towson University, which has helped me a great deal. Once a week I meet with them for advice about how to better my business aspirations.”