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Enjoying a pint at the Kent St. Ale House in Brooklyn

Starting on week 2 of my new adventure of writing professionally about beer full time, I've realized that I need to keep sharing this stuff here. Sure, I've got the Brewsday Tuesday column in the Gambit, and the Southern Brew News column starting in August, and several other irons in the fire. But this blog is where I can express myself in a relatively uncensored fashion and write about anything and everything I want to.

I've begun to really appreciate the wee hours of the night and morning for musing on ideas and opportunities. When the lights are out, and I'm in bed, next to a sleeping husband and snoozing cats, I can let my mind run wild. It's the one time where I don't feel pressure to DO something - create and email pitches, research potential markets and publications, figure out how to track my income and expenses so I won't be audited by the IRS, fold laundry, write a specific number of words... I need to justify every minute of my time to myself. And since I work on my own schedule, that is literally every waking moment now. But I'm also a creative person, and it takes a lot of imagination to create and follow through on all these projects, and sometime that requires complete zoning out and free thinking. Everyone has their process, and I'm learning that this is part of mine.

Learning how to listen to myself after 25+ years conforming to others' processes in the workplace and other organizational structures is a trip, I tell you what.

Recently, I've been drinking a lot of beer at several festivals. That is an interesting beer experience, and not exactly one that I find most useful for my purposes, for the most part. Pros: Exposure to a lot of beers and breweries in one place at one time. Cons: Exposure to a lot of beers and breweries in one place at one time. It's very difficult to get a handle on the flavors of a beer in a 2 oz. pour, and even more difficult to try to formulate or express an opinion about it. And after, I'd say, 10-12 different beers in a 3 hour period, it's useless to even try, the palate is so overwhelmed. It's engaging in the moment but it has very little lasting useful information.

Tasting glass for SAVOR
Drinking and writing about beer is also more than just beer for me. Craft beer culture, in my opinion, is as much about the environment in which the beer is enjoyed as it is about the beer itself and the people who make it. Sitting down and sharing a beer with a friend, or making new friends over a pint. Cracking into a delicious beer on a warm sunny day surrounded by good food and people you love. Trying something new for the very first time. Festivals, although useful for networking, are not conducive to this kind of craft beer experience.

Having fun times at the Mystic Krewe of Brew meeting with local brewers
Matt Horney, Josh Erickson, and Zac Caramonta
Although, it's not like I'm going to stop going to festivals, because they are awesomely fun and educational in their own right. This is just something that I realized at 1:30am in the quiet a few nights ago, in the wake of SAVOR in NYC and the WYES events. (Which I will be writing about in the near future.)

I'd love to start doing a blog post every day, to get the creative juices flowing and remind myself why I'm doing what I'm doing. And please know I'm not complaining about any of this - I'm incredibly happy and feel so lucky to be able to follow this dream. It's just taking a lot of adjustment that I'm still acclimating to.

And thanks to all of YOU for your support!


  1. Nora, came across your blog and would love to send you info on a local beer event. If interested please reach out to me at csandora@goforthbesocial.com and I can send the info your way.



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