Oh, the joy of starting something new. My foray into the brewing industry has been an exciting adventure to say the least. For those of you unaware, I first broke into the industry roughly two years ago. I found myself sitting at the wood(bar) of a little known brewpub; Bri Bri Springs Brewery, conjuring up the courage to ask a gentlemen I had only met the day before if he would take me on as his “apprentice”. I must have been wearing the right cologne that day because he accepted my offer. And so for the next five months I found myself falling asleep to the crashing waves of the Caribbean ocean right across the street, in the tiny, little town of Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica. That also gave way to an opportunity for myself and my business partner Patrick Ohlweiler to run the restaurant attached to the brewpub. For months, work consumed my life, waking up at 7am to get ready for the brew day, and finishing up closing down the bar by 10pm in the evening if I was lucky. Alas, I knew I couldn’t stay in Costa Rica forever, and at the end of the high season I made my departure. Working my way north, I traveled through the rest of Central America while stopping in Jamaica for a wedding as well.
Once home, I knew I had a passion for brewing. I started building my all-grain homebrew setup immediately with any spare funds I could muster. I started throwing my resume to any and all breweries that were hiring in BC and Alberta. When my search came up dry after a few months. I hesitantly decided I would also apply for the Olds College Brewmaster & Brewery Operations Management diploma program. It was a nerve wracking couple months but once accepted I was of firm belief that the program would be a great opportunity to burst into Alberta’s emerging craft beer industry. As luck would have it, and a couple of broken ribs(long story, don’t ask) I got an opportunity to work in my first commercial sized brewery in the months leading up to school. Working at Yellowhead Brewery in Edmonton the long days continued(I’m starting to notice a trend) but the guys and girls I worked with at Yellowhead are exceptional human beings. It was a sad day when I had to leave, but I’m off to a new, exciting adventure now; Olds College.
Now you know a little bit about me and how I ended up here. I’ll be sure to post updates throughout the school year on the trials and tribulations of being a brew student, and the occasional wreck I’m sure to create on the schools pilot brewery. Thanks for reading everyone. Until next time, this is Galen Kjargaard, signing out.