“It’s going to be a lot.”

That’s what I told Brooks Whittington a few weeks ago at one of our weekly staff meetings. We had just finished our first five-day test run of publishing our newest website and yet, the feeling in the room was more that things were half empty rather than half full.

Whatever the proverbial glass measures, full or empty, it will be with beer. That is after all the aim of our newest site, tenemu.com.

“It’s not halfwheel for beer.”

That’s what our staff was told. That staff—my aforementioned business partner Brooks Whittington, the familiar Brian Burt and four new faces—Taylor Abbey, Brian Brown, Jason Moore and Erik Perkins. They’re all accomplished beer drinkers, half of them have photographed professionally and one has even written a full-length book on beer. My hope is that we can develop the six reviewers (I’m sitting this one out) into one of the most detailed, enjoyable and prolific groups regarding beer reviews. There’s a long way to go, but we have to start at some point—and nothing seems wrong with a Monday in late October.

While we still review beer and cover news—the core of what halfwheel does in the cigar world—it’s not going to be halfwheel for beer. The writing style is different, the majority of the faces are different and our daily focus will be much different.

“So maybe one day we will be like halfwheel.”

That’s optimistic, probably unrealistic.

The beer world is much larger. There are more beers, more news, more blogs, more everything. It can be overwhelming particularly when you take into account how much time we spend covering an industry that is probably less than 5 percent of the other, but, that’s not what we are trying to do.

Tenemu’s staff and readers—some of which will overlap with halfwheel—will decide what direction the site takes. Our goal is to bring many of the same tools we have at halfwheel—professional editing (both text and photographic), an embrace of the latest technology and some resources—and see what we can make of it.

We’ve been working on Tenemu for over 18 months. It took a while to find a name (more on that here), a feel and a staff that we believed would be up to the challenge of entering an industry who many experts think is a bubble about to burst. I’m happy with what we’ve created, who we’ve brought on board and the few posts we’ve published already. We’ve made a big investment, both in money and more importantly, time, into creating Tenemu; and yet, it still feels like the work has just begun.

It’s not really a secret, halfwheel allowed Tenemu to happen. The experiences we learned, the technology we use and the people we’ve met gave us the opportunity to launch Tenemu the right way. Rest assured, Tenemu has already made halfwheel as a product better and will continue to do so every day going forward.

“We’re in it for the long haul.”

I made this point to each one of the staff members we brought on board for this project.

The beer world has chewed out up and spat out blog(ger)s in a manner that is simply incredible. Many great sites have packed it up for one reason or another and now are nothing more than an abandoned Twitter account and domain for sale.  If we’ve learned anything in the cigar world it’s that if you produce good work, on a regular basis, you will eventually find some success. If you produce great work, on an inconsistent basis, you will be lucky to be a memory. 

Not everything we’ve done as Rueda Media, LLC has been successful. None have ever been a screaming success out of the gate. I can’t make many promises regarding what Tenemu will look like a year from now, but our intention is for it to be up, still writing, even if you are the only one listening.

(Tenemu.com is now live. In case you were wondering, halfwheel will continue to be its normal self.)

Charlie Minato

I am an editor and co-founder of halfwheel.com/Rueda Media, LLC. I previously co-founded and published TheCigarFeed, one of the two predecessors of halfwheel. I handle the editing of our written content, the majority of the technical aspects of the site and work with the rest of our staff on content management, business development and more. I’ve lived in most corners of the country and now entering my second stint in Dallas, Texas. I enjoy boxing, headphones, the Le Mans 24-hour, wearing sweatshirts year-round and gyros. echte liebe.