What I Did on my Summer Vacation

and much of autumn, as well

In this building is a pair or rubber boots that have rubbed bald spots into my leg hair.

Faithful readers of All Hopped Up will have noticed a sharp decline in posting since April. Actually, that sentence is misleading; a “sharp decline” should read “a great nosedive to zero” and “faithful readers” implies that there are more readers than just you, Simon, and that those readers have a body of writing to be faithful to. So in the spirit of turning over new leaves and beginning afresh, I intend to fill you in on my summer. A summer so beer-filled that it would be a shame to leave it to inference and hearsay.

First, and most primary to my exploits in beer and my distraction from writing, I got a job. Through some treasured connections I managed to score an interview with David Brophy, the head brewer of McAuslan Brewing, Inc. I guess he liked the cut of my jib because he took me on as a brewer. Since May I’ve been in a daze that I would be so lucky as to turn my hobby into a profession.

For those who haven’t heard, McAuslan is the brewer most famously of St-Ambroise Pale Ale and Oatmeal Stout, but we also brew a blonde, a rousse, and an apricot-wheat beer. The joy of this job comes from the distinct sense of agency in creating beer at a moderately sized craft brewery that has substantial presence in not just the city, but the whole country.

I’ve gotten the go-ahead from the higher-ups to provide information on new releases and other scoops – so long as I don’t divulge any proprietary secrets – and you can find that stuff here first.

That’s it for now. Next I’ll talk about my time at Le Mondiale de la Bière, Montreal’s beerfest. It deserves its own post if only for the press pass the nice people gave me after I interviewed its founder, Jeanine Marois.


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