1. Where is your brewery?
Downtown St. Petersburg, Fl
2. What was the first beer you had that made you realize craft beer was going to be a bigger part of your life?
Stone Ruination. It has just come to Florida and I was at lunch with my friend and his family after he graduated from college. The waiter asked if we liked craft beer and I hadn't really had a lot of craft beer in my life, so naturally as a 21 year old I said, "yes." He poured the bottle into a glass and it was so bitter that I couldn't drink it all. I had no idea so much flavor could be put into a glass. At that point, I knew that I wanted to learn everything I could about making beers that were that aggressive and flavorful.
3. What is your favorite style to brew and why?
Farmhouse ales. There's no real definition for the style so it allows for infinite variances. Probably more so than any other beer style. They can be virtually any ABV, any color, almost any acidity level or hop profile; and you can use basically any form of mixed culture or single strain that you'd like. They do very well in stainless or in wood for primary, and they're excellent on fruit, spices, treatments, wood, and micro flora post fermentation. They're great clean, they're great funky, and they can be as complex as any beer out there, even when it's a simple. low ABV beer.
4. If you were stranded on an island (with a working refrigerator that automatically replenished itself) and you could only have one beer for the rest of your life in that fridge, which would it be?
Sierra Nevada Pale Ale.
5. What is your favorite music to listen to in the brewery?
Right now? Aweseom Mix Tape #1. Guardians of the Galaxy is my jam.
6. Which other brewery has inspired you the most? Why?
This is a difficult question because I find myself inspired all of the time by so many different breweries. I'd have to go back to Stone, first. I'd had good craft beer before drinking their beers, but non that affected me quite like Ruination, Sublimely Self Righteous, and Arrogant Bastard. Those beers changed me as a person. After having them (all on separate occasions) I was reminded of how much I don't know in the world. When it comes down to it, I'm an insignificant moron in a vast universe of unknowns. Whenever I began to think that I had it "all figured out," these beers individually brought me back to reality.
The second brewery would be Cigar City. Hunahpu's gave me a similar experience. A few other breweries that I admire and draw inspiration from would be Russian River, Jolly Pumpkin, New Belgium, Crooked Stave, Trinity, Wicked Weed, Allagash, Three Floyd's, The Rare Barrel, Jester King, Evil Twin, Prairie, The Bruery, New Glarus, AC Golden, Anchorage, 7venth Sun... Yeah... Just to name a few...
7. Single hop beer - which hops are you using?
Cascade. It's by no means my favorite hop, but we know more about it than most American hops and I don't usually like many single hop beers. Hard to go wrong with classic.
8. Where is your favorite place to get a beer after work and why?
I hardly ever want to get a beer after work, but if I had to choose, probably Cycle Brewing. They're five blocks from my brewery, it's really low key, dimly lit, rad beers, and I can usually be alone for a few minutes.
9. What is one piece of advice you'd give to someone who thinks they want to get into the craft beer industry?
Spend time working in a brewery. Get experience brewing on a system, cellaring, packaging, barrel aging: everything. Learn the practical process before jumping in. It's complicated. In the meantime, drink a lot of different beers and come up with a niche that you love. Focus on what you do well and allow your passion to shine through. Last, do not be afraid to ask for help.
10. Dogs or cats?
I own neither. I'm not a pet person, honestly. I love other people's animals, but I chose to forego the responsibility. I guess you could say I dislike them equally.