So, Milwaukee Beer Week started out rather harmless; I got an email from one of my local beer geek buddies. Actually it was one simple sentence, “Are you going to Sugar Maple for CBS (Canadian Breakfast Stout) tonight?” The answer was a resounding YES! The fact that one of the most respected “white whales” in the beer geek community would be tapped a short drive from my house was a no-brainer. We all had planned on heading out to kick off Milwaukee Beer Week anyways.
So I head over to Sugar Maple and meet and Andy and D-Train there. By the time I entered, they were already sipping on a snifter of the sweet liquid gold. I didn’t hesitate to requested a glass and was immediately consumed with joy. This was some of the best beer to ever grace my pallet!
Some other beer geek friends of ours, Matt and Matt, were there enjoying the festivities as well. So on paper this could have been considered a great night on its own but little did we know the night had just started. We were introduced to the beer buyer/manager from Groppi’s Food Market, Enjoli Duval. She’s doing some big things with their beer selection so keep an eye on her and her store in the future. While moving around the bar we noticed
Stone Brewing Company’s Midwest rep Aaron Tyrell was in the crowd so we sauntered over and said hi. He knows Andy fairly well and I had met him a time or two prior to this evening so we did a little catching up. While we were talking with Aaron he introduced us to some of his industry cohorts, Cameron from Victory Brewing Company, Ian from Lagunitas Brewing Company, and Andy’s friend John from Beechwood came in and plenty of beer talk ensued. At one point Aaron says to us “you want to meet the owner of Founders?” Andy and I simply looked at each other with both of our eyes glazing over from excitement. We couldn’t get the yes out fast enough!
Suddenly Dave Engbers, the owner and founder of Founders Brewing Company is shaking our hands and talking to us about BeerFM. Dave was a fantastic guy to chat with. You sometimes have this picture of what your beer geek idols will be like and Dave could not have been any better.
After a few more rounds and a lot of beer geekery it was time to call it a night. Sadly my real job requires an early wake up. Andy and I managed to pack in a days worth of beer geek heaven in about four hours though so I can’t complain. I thought to myself, “if this is just the first day of Milwaukee Beer Week, I can’t wait to see what the rest of the week has in store for us!”