Today is the birthday of Aron Deorsey, who for a lot of years was the brewmaster at the Beach Chalet Brewery & Restaurant in San Francisco, along with the Park Chalet and the Lake Chalet in Oakland. I got to know Aron much better a few years back when we roomed together attending Sierra Nevada’s Beer Camp for SF Beer Week. He had been making great beer at the beachside brewpub for a number of years, and is great fun to hang out with, but earlier this year he’s opened his own place, a brewpub in San Francisco called the Hop Oast Pub & Brewery. Join me in wishing Aron a very happy birthday.
Today is the 58th birthday of Ron Silberstein, the founder, and original brewer, of Thirsty Bear Brewing in San Francisco. I’ve known Ron for a number of years but got to know him better working on SF Beer Week the first few years when we working to get it going. We also spent a weekend together at Sierra Nevada’s Beer Camp, which was an awesome experience for everybody who attended. Join me in wishing Ron a very happy birthday.
Fritz Maytag, who bought the failing Anchor Brewery in 1965 and turned it into a model for the microbrewery revolution, celebrates his 81st birthday today. It’s no stretch to call Fritz the father of craft beer, he introduced so many innovations that are common today and influenced countless brewers working today. A few years ago, Maytag sold Anchor Brewery and Distillery to Keith Greggor and Tony Foglio of the Griffin Group, but continues to make his York Creek wine and consult with Anchor as Chairman Emeritus. I was happy to see him again a few years ago when I was invited to introduce him to receive an award from the Northern California Brewers Guild in Sacramento. Join me in wishing Fritz a very happy birthday.
Fritz with the organizers of SF Beer Week at our inaugural opening event at Anchor in 2009.
Today is the 70th birthday — The Big 7-O — of Bob Brewer, longtime brewery rep. for Anchor Brewing. For many years, he worked from southern California, circling the country with the entire nation his territory (the only exception being the Bay Area) representing Anchor beers. More recently, he moved back to the Bay Area, but you could find him at every nook and cranny of the beer world. A couple of years ago, Bob retired from Anchor, although he still occasionally works a festival or does other work, like giving a great talk at my class at SSU and more recently he was working the taps for Anchor at the Lagunitas Circus. Join me in wishing Bob a very happy birthday.
Today is also the 51st birthday of John Tucci, who I first met when he was the brewmaster for the San Francisco Gordon Biersch brewpub. John was one of Gordon Biersch’s best and most senior brewers, and especially with his one-offs that he brewed at that now-defunct location. He’s also a great champion for beer in San Francisco and was very active with the local brewers guild and SF Beer Week. When the San Francisco location closed, he brewed at their Palo Alto brewpub, but after 16 years, left and has opened his own brewery, 47 Hills Brewing, which is located at 137 South Linden Avenue in South San Francisco. Join me in wishing John a very happy birthday.
Yesterday I shared what I thought was an interesting story and photos of the Master Brewers’ Convention, from 1915, which began on September 30. It was held in San Francisco, California. On the second day of the two-day convention, October 1, 1915, they also held a formal banquet for all of the attendees and guests. It was held at German House, in the same space where the convention took place. Notice that a lot of the men there are wearing the same distinctive hat. Was there an MBAA hat that members wore?
Today is the birthday of Jesse Friedman, co-founder of Almanac Beer Co.. I first got to know Jesse when he was writing his beer and food blog, Beer & Nosh, but he’s since gone on to partner with Damian Fagan to create “Farm-to-Barrel” beers in 2010. They currently make three year-round beers and a plethora of individual seasonals under the “Farm to Barrel Series” umbrella, usually with local ingredients, often fruit or field. More recently, they opened a taproom and restaurant in San Francisco, where they’re doing great food as well as beer, as well as a newer taproom on the Island of Alameda. Jesse recently announced he was leaving Almanac, and it will be interesting to see what his next project will be. Join me in wishing Jesse a very happy birthday.
This is an interesting little tidbit I found looking through an old copy of “The Western Brewer: and Journal of the Barly, Malt and Hop Trades” from October 1915. In it, there’s a report on the Master Brewers’ Convention which took place the previous month in San Francisco, California. In addition to the story, there’s a really cool panoramic photo. Here’s the story:
This photo of all the attendees, including delegates and guests, of the Master Brewers’ Convention was taken on September 30, 1915. It was shot on the steps in front of German House, in San Francisco, where the convention took place. The photo was printed on two separate pages, with the left side above here, and the right side below.
I’m not sure if this list exactly matches who’s in the photographs, but this is a list of who registered to attend the convention:
And this photograph is inside German House of the meeting of the Master Brewers. Notice how there’s a beer in front of almost every person there.
Today is Dave McLean’s 49th birthday. Dave was the founder of Magnolia Pub & Brewery, the gastropub on Haight Street in San Francisco, along with the production brewery known as the Smokestack in the Dogpatch neighborhood of the city. He is a tireless champion of craft beer in the Bay Area, having worked on Slow Food Nation, The Eat Real Festival and SF Beer Week, among much else. He more recently co-founded Admiral Maltings along with Ron Silberstein. Join me in wishing Dave a very happy birthday.
A sextet from San Francisco at GABF 2008. From left: Adrienne McMullem, with 21st Amendment, Ben Spencer, from Magnolia, Sean Paxton, the homebrew chef, Ben’s wife, Shaun O’Sullivan, from 21st Amendment, and Dave.
Food and beer mixed happily and deliciously at the Slow Beer Festival 2008, as evidenced here by Ian Marks (from Hog Island Oyster Co.), Taylor Boetticher (from the Fatted Calf), Dave, John Tucci (from Gordon Biersch San Francisco) and Shaun O’Sullivan (from 21st Amendment).
Today is the 41st birthday of Justin Crossley, the man behind the mic at The Brewing Network, one of the industry’s best voices. He’s an avid homebrewer and talker, a deadly combination, especially on radio. He also filmed Porter’s Porter Day a couple of years ago and it will fun to see the result of that project. Of course, he’s also opened the Hop Grenade, the next piece of the growing Brewing Network empire. Join me in wishing Justin a very happy birthday.