You were city folks at one point.
B: Well, Rebecca actually grew up on a sheep farm in Nova Scotia, but I’ve always been a city person.
R: I set out to see the country and like so many people. I got to Vancouver and got stuck. The elastic band started to tighten, and it got as far as Sorrento and it broke!
How did you get into brewing as a…I’m not sure “profession” is the word to use with you.
B: Lifestyle? Brewing as a lifestyle. We were working as social workers on the East Side [of Vancouver], and the story goes that I needed something to keep my mind off what I was doing, so I started homebrewing more seriously. Then through Rebecca’s work to educate people about where their food comes from, and connect city with rural folk, I got to meet all these people in the food industry, and a lot of them were chefs. We’d get together, and everybody would bring their stuff, and mine was the alcohol, and they really encouraged us to do this so they could get this beer on a regular basis.
Long story short: we said “We don’t have any money,” and they said “We know people with money,” and they introduced us.
Some of the restaurateurs sponsored my way into brewing school.
Where did you go?
B: The American Brewers’ Guild in Sacramento. So I learned more of the science, but a lot of brewing is tenure. You need to be there long enough to understand where you’re going. How to taste something and introduce the flavor into your beer. It’s like being a chef. You know the right amounts to put in without having to experiment all the time.