What’s your current position at your brewery, and how did you get started in the craft brewing industry?
I’m the director of sales & marketing at Octopi Brewing [in Waunakee, Wis.]. I’m the main point of contact for our contract clients and also keep an eye on our house brand, 3rd Sign. Before this, I was the beer manager at the largest Binny’s Beverage Depot in the Lincoln Park area of Chicago, where I oversaw one of the largest beer departments in the U.S. I also taste for the Beverage Testing Institute and the World Beer Awards, and have helped out at Siebel a few times.
What’s new at Octopi Brewing?
Everything! We’re brand new!
What’s the best part of being a part of the craft brewing community?
The community itself. The camaraderie in the beer industry is second to none. It’s why I got into contract brewing: to help smaller breweries extend their reach and to help them grow.
Name a favorite food and beer pairing.
Pale ale and cheeseburger.
What’s your biggest accomplishment unrelated to your job?
Before beer, I worked in the audio industry mostly doing synthesizer programming and sound design. If you listened to music in the early 2000s, you probably heard my sounds.
What’s your favorite beer that your brewery does not produce?
Firestone Walker’s DBA (Double Barrel Ale). It’s perfect. Runner-up: Orval. (I actually have an Orval tattoo!)
What do you like to do in your time away from the brewery?
I’m an avid fan of analog modular synthesizers and an overall music junkie, so something related to those more often than not.
What’s the most memorable travel destination at which you’ve had a chance to sample the local beer?
Belgium is the obvious choice, but as cool as that trip was, I have to give it to Portland during 2015’s Craft Brewers Conference. It was that much more fun hanging out with fellow industry folks at places like Cascade and The Commons.