As we close the book on 2012, and crack the binding on 2013, I thought I’d take a few minutes to look back over the past year and highlight some of my favorite moments. For me, 2012 was a year of good beer and even better friends. The year started with homebrew days… Spending Sunday afternoons nursing hangovers and brewing up the latest recipe, swapping ideas and making plans for how we would conquer the beer world. Getting “re-drunk” in Oz’s garage, standing around the brew kettle to keep warm. Grilling venison sausage on a fire started with Conaughty’s “shitty poems”, and convincing Trish to try new beers, determined to find some she would like, slowly converting her into a craft beer drinker.
In February, we made our second trip to Southern Tier Brewing Co. in Lakewood, NY with friends, Heidi and Andy. The four of us enjoyed some of our favorite beer as we huddled under the propane heaters on the patio. Later on, Jared led us on a tour of the brewery and let us try 2X Milk Stout straight from the bright tank. It was a great trip despite a little “incident” with Andy and the cab driver, Zero, on the way to dinner in Jamestown, and driving home the next day with hangovers…
I turned 30 in March, and became a Certified Beer Server. Still being somewhat new to craft beer, I was happy to have passed the test and, who knows, maybe it’s just the first step on my way to becoming a Certified Cicerone one day! In April, we traveled to Hunter Mountain for TAP-NY, where we drank unbelievable amounts of delicious NY craft beer and met some amazing new friends, like the Dupas, Lindsey Styborski from Brooklyn Brewery, and Adam Lang & Jan Matysiak, brew master at Sixpoint. (…and we ate SPAM fries!) We met Garrett Oliver in May, during a meet and greet at MacGregors Tap Room. It was really cool to meet the man that creates some of the best beer on the east coast, and literally wrote the book on beer. If you’ve met Garrett, I’m sure you will agree… the man has endless amounts of swag.
The summer of 2012 brought our first experience with Rochester Real Beer Week. This amazing week of beer events in Rochester allowed us to interact with so many great people in the beer industry, not only the locals, but players from all over the country who came in to celebrate Rochester’s expanding craft beer scene. This is when we first met Luke Purcell, brew master at Great Lakes, and Charlie Carson from Anderson Valley Brewing Co. And I ran my first 5k (!!!), the Rochester Real 5k, presented by Sam Adams and Saranac, hosted at Lovin’ Cup.