You can’t judge a book by its cover, and this is especially true for home brewers. The immaculately groomed , smooth-talking “banker”, dressed in a suit and tie, may not be who you would picture when you think of a home brewer. Our friend, Walt Postlewait of Enterprise Cascadia, who was instrumental in financing our brewery expansion, is evidence that those with a passion for making beer can be considered very sophisticated.
Q: What inspired you to home brew and how did you get started?
A: I started home brewing back in 1991. I was just out of college and a little bored. I had always enjoyed good beer and in Eugene there was a market that carried beers from all over the globe. My roommate and I started collecting the empty bottles and arranged them on a large bookcase in geographic order. Once out of college and back in the Portland area, I couldn’t find a regular supply of good beer. So I started making my own. I really don’t remember how I got started. I think it was a trip to F H Steinbart’s. After a few years I converted to Cornelius kegs and invested in a CO2 set up. The bottling was my least favorite part of the operation.
Q: What has or hasn’t kept you interested in doing it?
A: The mid/late 90’s was the hay day of my brewing. I created a four tap fridge with three devoted to beer and one to an all natural ginger-ale that I created that used no refined sugars. We entertained a lot back then and I was brewing a new batch about every other week. I had a great IPA, stout, and amber which were the staples. I would also play around with more interesting batches like a very light, heavy on honey, ale, and various pale ales ad stouts. Most were named with Indian names and my “operation” was called Tecumseh Brewing. As life added kids and a career, time for brewing began to wane. The four tap fridge was replaced with a fridge that was used more for food, with room for two Cornelius kegs shoved in the corner. As really good beer began to be more readily available, the need to make my own waned.
Q: Are you brewing right now, and what are your plans for beer in the future?
A: I think it has been two or three years since I brewed. I find that a keg from Fort George fits in the spare fridge just fine so I no longer need to make my own. My sister wants to start brewing with some of her friends and I will help her get started.
Q: Describe your all-time best brew:
A: My best beer was a heavily hopped Indian pale ale called Anasazi Pale Ale. I used a bunch of Cascade hops thrown in late, last two minutes, of the boil. It was very tasty. I do miss it from the creating side. I really liked enjoying something I created along with knowing beer is alive. The whole process was very interesting, satisfying, and created great memories. All-in-all, I only made one batch that wasn’t drinkable.