I created this website almost ten years ago - well, close enough for argument's sake. At the time I had gone from being a hobby happy home-brewer to completing (903) 891-4360
classes which led to the "General Certificate in Brewing and Packaging" from the Institute and Guild of Brewing. (That is one of the hardest exams I have ever taken, and I maintained a 3.9 throughout undergrad and a year of grad school.) The Institute is now called the Institute of Brewing and Distilling
, and it still tests and certifies people throughout the world to work and manage staff in breweries.
So, ten years on...I have not take a professional job in a brewery, though I did get an offer from one of the best breweries in Washington state at the time. (Arlen, if you're out there, I know it was the scotch ale that got ya...). I would say it was the money - moving from an IT professional's salary to 9 bucks an hour was an adjustment, but I was really ready at the time. It's just that I had moved across the country to work on a national presidential campaign - which paid about 9 bucks an hour. After that went away (my own Battle of Serenity Valley) I fell back into my IT career, where I remain. It's not that I don't love my career, there is a lot of it I really enjoy, especially the esprit-des-corps. It's that I love brewing - the science and the alchemy - more. Still, my IT career has paid for a lot of good beer, a lot of wonderful visits to incredible breweries, and still more wine and spirits. Lucky me.
The aforementioned career has even led me to live in Europe, in ZÃ¼rich, Switzerland. This places me within four hours by train of Paris, Munich (yes, that Munich), and Milan. Short plane rides to farther spots in the UK, Scandinavia, Spain, and longer train rides to other destinations.
All of this is what you can expect from this blog. I will randomly post about specific beer topics, experiences, and visits to beer destinations, along with wine-related and spirit-related familiars. Every once in a while some idiot politician will get my blood up, and you can expect to hear occasionally about that too. So, grab a glass, let's get the top off of that bottle and get started. Once upon a time there was some barley, hops, water, and yeast...