To say a lot has changed in two years would be the understatement of the year. I’ve changed, you’ve changed, Pittsburgh has changed, Pittsburgh beer has changed, and the way we know, talk, and learn about beer has changed. And that is what makes life so damn cool…things just keep changing and giving us something new to look forward to all the time!
The idea behind Breaking Brews was born from one simple, uninformed statement. I won’t go into full detail right now, but you can check out that story here. I took several months to cultivate an idea for a blog that was laid-back, fun, interesting, entertaining, informative, educational, and didn’t threaten folks new to craft beer with snobbery and jargon. For me, it’s always been about the experiences happening outside the pint glass and that’s what I wanted to bring to you. What’s inside the glass is, of course, a tremendous product…one that refreshes, excites, and stirs up conversation. But ultimately…it serves a bigger purpose in that it brings people together.
As this blog and this overall mission of mine to enhance craft beer from my corner of the Interwebs turns two today, I find myself reflecting on how far the Pittsburgh craft beer scene has come, as well as how much craft beer in general has evolved and grown. The comment of “How does this place think it’s going to survive without Bud and Miller products?” that spawned Breaking Brews has been answered vehemently by the craft beer industry. Craft beer has made enough of an impact on the big guys that they’ve resorted to either throwing millions of dollars at buying out craft breweries or millions of more dollars at taking stabs at craft beer during the Super Bowl. They’re slowly but surely watching their market slip away to a growing group of adults opening up their minds to quality, artisanal products, unwilling to let a commercial dictate what they consume.
And Pittsburgh…WOW, have we exploded! I remember when I moved here in 2003. Craft beer was not on my radar yet. But as I look back, I could count the number of craft breweries on one hand. Now I need both hands and all my toes…more than TWICE! It’s incredible to see such talent rise and take their game to the professional level, giving us all endless choices of the nectar we crave. Creativity, originality, dedication, and ingenuity…Pittsburgh is flooded with this, and the end result is some seriously kick-ass beer! Without question, our local beer scene truly offers something for everyone. And with more breweries in planning and preparing to open their doors in the near future, I can’t see how you and I will ever get bored.
Here’s the post that kicked things off. It went live a few days after the actual launch of Breaking Brews and got this train rolling down the tracks.
So, now that Breaking Brews has turned two years old, what’s next? Well, I can say the same commitment to delivering you up-to-date, relevant, easy-to-digest content will be present and continue to evolve. Serving as The Official Blog of the Pittsburgh Craft Beer Network, my efforts to keep growing both platforms and give you the ultimate resource for events, news, information, and fun with beer year-round will continue to evolve as well. The Over a Couple of Beers Podcast will continue to bring fun beer personalities in front of the mic, so be sure to subscribe to the show on iTunes and Stitcher and don’t miss a broadcast! Also, I’m tinkering with a video series, but haven’t found the right angle for you yet. Stay tuned…
In the near future, two new features will be launching on Breaking Brews:
- Chronicles of a New Brewery – We’ve partnered up with soon-to-open Helicon Brewing in Oakdale to bring you a bi-monthly feature on the trials, tribulations, and triumphs a new brewery experiences throughout its first year of operation. The lead-off feature will bring you up to speed on the events that have led up to grand opening weekend, as well as how the first few days of business unfolded.
- Home Brewing Spotlight – While the title of this feature has yet to be determined, I have tapped homebrewing extraordinaire Gregor Bender to bring you a feature highlighting the talented homebrewing community Pittsburgh harbors. This feature will give you insight on different homebrewers, how they got into brewing, their favorite beers, and much, much more.
It’s been two years of fun, and I can’t thank you enough for being part of this extraordinary ride. It’s been an incredible experience sharing in the growth Pittsburgh’s craft beer landscape has seen and I look forward to more of that in 2016 and beyond. If you’ve taken the time to read a post, share a post, drop me a line, tell a friend, or walk away with some semblance of knowledge or entertainment, thank you, thank you, thank you. And if you’ve just stumbled upon Breaking Brews today, bookmark this shit…and get ready to have some fun!