Friday, June 12, 2009

Tripel Dubbel Q&A: Saint Somewhere Brewing Company

I decided that I wanted to launch a Q&A feature to the blog and wanted to keep it as simple as possible, but with a bit of a twist. With that said, I came up with and present to you the Tripel Dubbel: two sets of three questions each, with the first set being geared specifically toward the featured brewery and the second remaining constant for each "interview" (I hate to call it that, because it's really not). That said, the constant questions will likely be a work in progress for the first few entries as, while I like them as they stand now and am happy to keep them as is, I am open to suggestions to tweak them.

First up for the Tripel Dubbel is Bob Sylvester of the Saint Somewhere Brewing Company located in Tarpon Springs, Florida. Bob opened Saint Somewhere in 2006 as a small batch brewery that specializes in "traditionally brewed, hand crafted Belgian style ales."

What are your feeling on the current state of the Florida brewing scene?
Growing by leaps and bounds with new breweries opening every few months, it's an exciting time to be a Florida Brewer...finally!

How has the public outside of Florida responded to your beers now that you are available nationally through an agreement with Shelton Brothers?

We've been received very well. Being a niche product I realized that we couldn't survive on Florida alone. We've also been blessed with a lot of great press. We structured the packaging to reflect Florida, but not in an obvious way, which makes us more approachable throughout our market.

Can you provide any insight into the decision to go strictly with 750ml bottles for your products as opposed to the traditional 12 oz. bottles for six pack sales?

Well, that's easy. When we decided to jump into the beer business, my promise to myself was that I would cut no corners. I would never do anything to the product just to save money, or just for marketing purposes. The 750's do make a great presentation, but the larger volume of beer reacts differently than 12 oz. More volume means more yeast in suspension, less oxidation, better fermentation dynamics and so on.

Which of your own beers is your favorite and why?
You're asking me to pick a favorite child. I love them all!

If you could brew a collaborative beer with any other US brewer/brewery, who would it be and why?
No question...Ron Jeffries from Jolly Pumpkin.
(Note: I've followed up with Bob to get some more info as to why he chose Ron and will edit the post accordingly if/when he responds)

What is your proudest moment as a professional brewer?
Seeing Saison Athene chosen for a beer dinner by Gourmet Magazine.

And there you have it...thanks again for being my first victim, Bob!

beer, Bob Sylvester, Florida, Gourmet Magazine, Jolly Pumpkin, Ron Jeffries, Hopback, Saint Somewhere, Saison Athene, Shelton Brothers, Tarpon Springs, Tripel Dubbel