I am a very happy beerperson. That was a huge festival season — the run-up to Beervana last weekend was filled with plenty of other more-or-less-related Things To Do — and now it’s over but for the mopping up and the inevitable retrospectives. I feel like I was a little close to the festival this year, and anyway attended it in a strange and many-hatted capacity, so I’ll leave those to others for now. For myself, I’m feeling unusually zen and grateful, and feel like I should basically footnote the real world with acknowledgements. If you’ll let me set aside my traditionally ranty manner a moment, massive thanks to —
- Emma (at home) and Sean and the entire Golding’s crew (at work), for accommodating my multitasking and forgiving the shirking of (or distraction-damage to) my usual duties which it entailed.
- My fellow seminar-wranglers — George (podcast accomplice and whatnot); Megan (friend of the show); plus Amber, Ben, Hadyn,1 Michelle, and Tim (collectively of Beyond The Achievements, which will also be helping get some of the sessions online for your after-the-fact viewing pleasure) — who pulled together a varied programme of panels and presentations in very short order.
- Beth Brash, the new Festival Overboss (and also friend of the show), for trusting and/or saddling us with control of the seminar room. I’m a big fan of such things at beer festivals, massive nerd that I am.
- Our seminar presenters — lawyer Paul Johns; can-maker John Savery; local brewers Ava Wilson (Beer Baroness), Kieran Haslett-Moore (North End), Matt Warner (ParrotDog), and Tracy Banner (Sprig & Fern); visiting brewers Darron Welch (Pelican), Jacob Leonard (Breakside), Jayne Lewis (Two Birds), and Tyler Brown (Barley Brown’s); and Victoria University scientist Dr Nicola Gaston.2
- Providers and beer and props for the seminars — the Brewers’ Guild of New Zealand, Visy, Lion, North End, ParrotDog, Beer Baroness, Stone & Wood, Garage Project, Tuatara, Two Birds, Breakside, and Barley Brown’s (and also to Cryer Malt, who brought in and signed off on the last three). 3 Thanks also, with a bonus apology, to Te Aro Brewing Co., and the Fork & Brewer, who rescued the beer supply for one seminar only to have me forget them in this post’s first version.
- Luke Robertson of Ale Of A Time, who invited George and I to sit down and record a podcast episode with him — which will almost certainly be online in a speedier fashion than the entire calendar year it took us to get his episode of ours up.
- And finally4 thanks to two crews from the ‘legit’ media who invited me to ramble a bit. There’s a nice little write-up on Stuff from Olivia Wannan who asked me to elaborate on serving suggestions while Ross Giblin took video of my “Beer: A User’s Guide” talk. The day before, I’d had the pleasure of sitting down with Jesse Mulligan as he broadcast Radio New Zealand’s Afternoon show live from the concourse:
It was a great event all round, and the thousands who showed up to enjoy it make worthwhile the work of the dozens — paid and unpaid — who make it happen. I’m sure I’ll get into some kind of debrief or rundown of highlights of the festival as a festival at some point, but for now I’m still just chuffed to’ve been part of Beervana 2015 as a people-powered beer-related-enjoyment-dispensing machine. Bring on 2016.
- Also a Friend Of The Show, for the record. There’s lots of multiple-hat-wearing in this town generally and in this list, particularly.
- Amber, George, Hadyn, Megan, and myself also all pulled seminar-hosting duties of one or more forms. I told you there was a lot of hat-juggling.
- Special shout-out, here, to Lion and Garage Project, who let Nicola and I do mean things to their beers to demonstrate the science of faults.
- Though I’ve almost certainly forgotten someone deserving. I hope my memory issues are sufficiently documented that you won’t take that poorly if it’s you.