One of the many hats I wear is the one of Cincinnati Craft Beer Examiner. It is a heavy hat and one that falls off from time to time. As more and more breweries open in Cincinnati, and perhaps someday one run by yours truly, there is much beer to review and it is well passed due.
To be more informative, because being the Cincinnati Craft Beer Examiner is a part of who I am and this blog is about all the wonderful things I do and wish to share. This blog is about my opinions and observations. This blog is about coming together to walk the road to the future together. So, it’s about more than me. It’s about us.
Through the pages of the Cincinnati Craft Beer Examiner blog, one is taken on a journey through craft beer, history of Cincinnati, beer and food pairings, menu ideas, local Cincinnati beer related events and festivals. Yeah, it has all that.
Again, why all the repeat?
Because, it is necessary. Read all the stuff. Share all the stuff. And the pages will get better.
Perhaps I’m learning more about Search Engine Optimization or perhaps I’m lucky. My article about former classmate Edwina Marquand is now the first link when searching for her name. In a future article I’ll be sure to do the same for another former classmate by the name of Kevin Pelch. After all, he is the one who gave me the nickname Ropeman in the 10th grade. It is a name I used proudly for years until Anne Langley gave me the one of Brainmuffin. That, however, is writings for another time.
As many readers know, I also write as the Cincinnati Craft Beer Examiner. As the Cincinnati beer scene is going crazy these days, it is quite a bit keeping up. Several breweries have opened over the last few years, including Listermann’s (yes, the home brew supply place), Mad Tree and Double Barrel. Oh, what to do.
Well, it is time to do reviews. Not of one beer from each brewery. No, that wouldn’t feed my OCD very well. It is time to review everything available. Oh great…more text to read. Yes, but also video reviews. Pictures of beer (posted to Flickr too). After all, it is time to combine all my passions into a single, directed future. It is time time to combine beer, photography and writing. After all, Charlie Papazian was the one who pushed me to start on Examiner and it is high time his recommendation was rewarded.
It all began quite well. In the summer of 2009, the Cincinnati Beer Fest was being held for the first time at Roebling Point. Previously held in the Winter time, this was also the first time it was during the summer. Wanting to practice taking pictures of people, I wanted to attend and then wonder around capturing the event. I contacted the fest organizer, Craig Johnson, and he asked me to be the official photographer. This was a start of a partnership that would last 3 years.
The 2009 Cincinnati beer fest came and went. In February of 2010, the third annual Cincinnati Winter Beer fest has become too large for the hotel in Covington. For the first time, the fest was actually held in Cincinnati. Again held in a hotel, it quickly overran the facility, though many had fun. I again took pictures and had a great time meeting fest goers and talking to brewers.
The summer of 2010 was interesting. Craig Johnson wanted to do something different. In October, he conducted a fest on the Purple People Bridge. The setting was unique and it promised to be a good fest. The weather on the 10th was near 80, sky was clear and the crowd did other things. Still good pictures and good conversation.
Columbus also came on the menu for beer fests in 2010. Expanding in the May, the first was well attended and held over two days. The Columbus fest would grow to include the winter as well.
The beer fests of 2011 grew in attendance, beer selection and choice of events. The fests were held in Cincinnati and Columbus. The pictures were great too.
The year 2012 started as normal. The Columbus fest in January and the Cincinnati fest in February. In need of setup help, I arrived in Columbus hours early to do my time. The Cincinnati fest also took some extra time. I climbed the Leinenkugel’s truck to get great shots of the crowd. I wrote an Insider’s Guide To Surviving the Cincinnati Winter Beer Fest. All was well.
The summer Columbus fest was the beginning of the end. Though I could not attend anyway, I was not asked to take pics. It was a bit thrown together, so I figured it was an oversight. Then the Columbus Winter fest came and went. No call. Now the Cincinnati beer fest is close and I’m not taking pictures.
It is the end of my era as fest photography geek. I may still be there as a beer slinger, but it is not nearly as fun. Being able to walk among the crowd, talk to the attenders, chat with beer industry insiders. That’s what beer fest means to me. I may have to find new meaning.
Today has finally arrived. Today I set about bottling my first pale ale containing rye malt
as a specialty grain. Today is the day I get to see if it has survived secondary. Today is the day. And I’m starting late.
On weekends, many times I don’t set my alarm. I wake up at 6am anyway or the dogs get all manner of excited and want to go out by then. Not today. No noise. No barking. Up at 8:15 am. Ugh. So much to do: stretch, clean kitchen, move fermentor, sanitize bottles, prime beer, bottle, label, etc.
Oh yeah, and post about today’s activities.
I have decided to take a more personal turn with my blogs. Yes, I’ll still write about marketing strategies, business practices, interpersonal relationships, changing the lives of others and so on. I have listened to your voices and will make good changes. The topics upon which I have received the most feedback are, in order of responses, most to least: photography, personality types and homebrewing beer. Awesome. More attention to them and today it is beer‘s turn.