Monday, April 26, 2010

Beer School, it's about time

I've reached a turning point in my life. I'm at that age where it's too late to go back to college, and too early to retire. So I need to find something new to do with my life. I think it's time for Beer School.

I knew I wanted to start my own brewery a long time (3 years) ago. I have had my own business before, and I really miss it. I have kicked around the idea of getting an internship or volunteering at a brewery. The problem with that is the fact that Arizona lacks any brewery where I could. In the end, I figure that fact will help my dream come true.

I have been a novice homebrewer for about 2 years now. It's something that started out as a fun way to make lots of good beer, cheap. But it has tunred into a passion. I absolutely love beer. Beer is good. Beer is my friend. And I would love to go into business with my friend beer.

I have been reading books about breweing and breweries for the past year or so. First up was "Brewing Up a Business" by my hero, Sam Calagione of Dogfish Head. By the time I was finished reading that, I had my mind made up. I wanted to be the next Sam. Then I read "Beer School, Bottling Success at the Brookly Brewery" by the owners Steve Hindy and Tom Potter. A truely fascinating and educational book for the beer and business alike. Now I'm on to "The Complete Joy of Home Brewing" by Charlie Papazian. I love it. I just can't get enough.

I made up my mind at the beginning of 2010 that I was going to open my own brewery. However, things have been slow. I would have loved to be at that stage of creating my own brews, and looking for locations. But I'm not there yet. In fact, I am still far away from that place. Instead I am reading books, designing logos, and creating websites. Not that any of that is bad, it's just not good enough for me anymore.

It didn't help reading Burr Street Brew Blog. Here is a guy that quit his job to persue his dreams of "working in the craft brew industry." He has inspired me more than any of the books I have read. He is doing it. He is living the dream. He is living all our dreams. He is chasing his dream, and he has been documenting his journey on his blog. He has gone from insurance, to the Siebel Institute. I read with envy, and admiration every time.

So, I'm going to do it. I'm taking that next step, or leap Whatever you want to call it. I am going to do it. I am right there, looking over the edge, deciding if I should go sit down, or jump. I need to make up my mind once and forall. This weekend, I did.

I'm going to jump!

In the next few weeks, I will sign up for my first official beer class. I want to learn as much as I can, as fast as I can. Homebrewing has been all the education some people have ever needed. But that's not me. I want more. I want to know it all. I'm sure that will never happen, but I can try can't I?

There it is. It's put there now. I can't look back. I've jumped off the edge, and I'm falling fast. Now all I have to do is decide if I'm going to fall on my face, in the dirt, or fall into a wonderful pool of beer. I pray for the latter.