Fancying myself to have a rather discerning palette at the ripe old age of seventeen, I started brewing beer while in high school. The drinking age was nineteen at the time so I couldn’t buy beer, but I was able to purchase the materials to make it. Home-brew stores were scarce so ingredients were hard to come by. Not easily discouraged, I would drive my Mom’s Chevy Malibu Wagon to downtown Milwaukee and buy ingredients and equipment from an elderly German lady in a small wine and brew supply shop. My interest and curiosity had set a course.
Experimenting with different ingredients, I would try to reproduce commercially available beers and eventually went on to create original ones. An interest in cooking as well as biochemistry helped fuel the enthusiasm. Friends and family also took an interest in my endeavors and have since encouraged me all along the way.
Craft brewing has been advancing at such an unbelievable pace for the past two decades that it’s an exciting time to be in the Brewlab. The Malibu might be long gone, but I am just getting started.