The dream began as a junior in college, with an innocent trip to a sports bar. The energy. The people. The magic of connecting with friends, and making new ones, over a pint of beer. The first time I entered the bustling gathering place I knew that I wanted to open my own place some-day.
After college graduation, I tasted my first real beer (read: craft beer) at a Colorado microbrewery. I loved it so much when I got back I joined the beer of the month club, and within a year I was homebrewing. Technical and organized by nature, I spent a lot of time planning that first batch even though it was a simple kit. I only had to boil water and add the extracts. Even the hops were in extract form. But I enjoyed the process and it tasted good, so I kept brewing.
In the beginning, I didn’t focus on any one style. I experimented with recipes that sounded good based on the names and descriptions from the supply store. That all changed when my job took me to Europe for project trips. I spent a lot of time in Germany and Belgium and enjoyed the beer they had to offer. In between trips I spent time learning about the history of their beer making processes. I developed an appreciation for the styles and a deep respect for the artisans that created them. I particularly admire their commitment to perfection and drive to honor their rich traditions.
As much as I enjoy brewing, I delight more in watching people enjoy the beer that I brew. I’m excited to offer another choice to the craft beer community and welcome the chance to talk with those who have as much interest in beer – as myself. One of my favorite things is introducing people to new styles while showing them that some of the preconceived notions about beer (hoppy, dark beers, etc.) are not always accurate.
I am excited about being an “official” member of the Pittsburgh craft beer community where there is much camaraderie and support among brewers. I appreciate all of the help, guidance and support that I have received to this point from everyone in Coraopolis and the craft beer community in Pittsburgh. I hope that I can be as helpful to others as they take similar journeys.