DRINK WITH THE WENCH PRESENTS:
The Beer Blogger Interview Series
Curious what goes on in the minds of your favorite beer bloggers? Well, The Beer Wench is and she has embarked upon a mission to interview as many beer bloggers that she can — from all over the world. Are you a beer blogger? Do you want to share your story? Send me an email!
INTRODUCING: CHRIS BJERRISGAARD
AUTHOR OF: TRUE CASK
Beer Blogger Interview
1.Where did you grow up?
Rossland BC Canada, Better known as Red Mountain BC. It’s a small ski town north of Spokane Washington.
2. What sports if any did you play growing up, through college and beyond?
Ski & Snowboard in the hometown. Mixed Martial Arts now.
3. How old were you when you had your first beer?
4. If you can recall, what is the story of your first beer? Where did you have it? What style and brand was it?
I went to a party on the side of a mountain during the winter. Bonfire, sledding, and a 40oz of Old English.
5. Where, if applicable, did you go to college? What did you study? What additional activities, organizations, sports did you partake in during college?
Art Institute of Vancouver. I took Entertainment Business Management. The program has since moved to Vancouver Film School.
Craft Beer Epiphany
Every craft beer enthusiast has at least one pinnacle craft beer experience that completely changes ones perspective on beer. I refer to this mind-blowing moment as a “craft beer epiphany.”
1. What was your first craft beer epiphany? Recall as many details about it as you can:
My friend Scott returned from a trip to Bellingham Washington with a case of Fat Tire. Thus began the exploration of real beer. Funny, because Fat Tire seems rather mundane now.
2. Have you have additional craft beer epiphanies since the first? Detail as many of them as you wish:
Many. My first Lambic, my first real Imperial IPA, my first Harvest IPA, on and on. Every time I try something new I have a craft beer epiphany.
Beer Blog Background
1. How long have you been writing your beer blog?
Since Aug 2009.
2. What inspired you to start writing your blog?
I got big into the whole Gary Vaynerchuk personal branding thing. I had always wanted to start a blog but he provided the push I needed. Figured I better pick a topic I can talk about all the time, so it came down to beer or mixed martial arts. Despite the fact I know more about MMA, I also found there were way to many people out there talking about it, due to this I had no real niche to fulfill in the community. With beer the community, although strong, is smaller and Canada only has a handful of people representing the scene up here. Thus I picked beer.
3. Why did you chose the name of your blog?
Simple branding exercise. I wanted something that spoke to the core of the craft beer movement. Beer from a cask is one of the most pure forms you can taste beer, and the word true was used to enhance that. I also considered pure cask, real cask, etc. True just had a nicer ring to it.
4. What are you personal goals for your blog? What do you hope to achieve with it?
I just want it as an outlet for my personal branding. I work in internet marketing, specializing in social media. I think it would be a joke for me to work in that field and not have a ‘personal portfolio’ of sorts. In the end I just want to spread the love of craft beer, and maybe one day do some marketing consulting for the industry.
5. What is one of the coolest things that happened to you as a result of being a beer blogger?
I’ve met a ton of good friends through my blogging, both in person and online. I must say the strength of this community blows my mind everyday. Everyone is so friendly and willing to help each other out, and that has to be the coolest part about it.
6. What are you top 3 favorite beer blogs/beer websites?
Have to show love for my boys over at Two Beer Queers, Hop Cast, and Thank Heaven For Beer. There are so many good blogs out there it’s hard to pick just three. Also have to show respect for BC BREWS, as he has been writing about the BC craft beer scene much longer than I have.
1. What are your top 3 favorite beer styles?
Imperial IPA, Imperial Stout, Lambic. Unless its food pairing, then Saison has to get in there.
2. What are your top 3 favorite breweries?
Killing me here… Hair of the Dog, Driftwood (BC), and Lost Abby. So much respect to the 350 or so other breweries I love but don’t have room to list.
3. If you could work with or for any one brewery, which one would it be and why?
My own brewery! That said, of the current existing breweries it would have to be Dirftwood Brewery. I think they are best set up right now to be the BC brewery that makes a major mark on the craft beer scene. An extremely close second would be Central City Brewing, as their head brewer is probably the best in BC.
4. Are you a homebrewer? If yes, what is the most unique and interesting beer recipes you’ve brewed as a homebrewer?
Not yet, but a couple of friends and myself are in the process of making our own nano-rig.
5. Do you have any beer certifications (BJCP, Cicerone, Siebel, American Brewers Guild)?? If so, what are they?
None at this time; however, I just finished beer school and passed with flying colors. I do plan on becoming Cicerone certified, but the test is out of my budget right now. In the mean time I plan on getting the certified beer server from Cicerone as it is a pre-requisite for becoming Cicerone certified.
6. What is your favorite beer and food pairing?
In Vancouver we have a tap house known as the Alibi Room. It has possibly the biggest beer list in Canada – all craft. They serve these amazing chicken wings with honey, garlic, chili, and fresh herbs. They pair so well with the Driftwood Farmhand Saison it’s bordering on religious experience. If you are ever in Vancouver make sure to drop by Alibi and try this pairing!
The Personal Side
1. What is your current day job?
Internet marketing, social media, and content acquisition for a small media startup in Vancouver.
2. If you could change your career at this very moment, without any restrictions on what you could do, what would you want to do and why?
Own a brewery. That said, I have a ton of things I would love to do for a living.
3. Are you married? Children?
I live with my girlfriend and have a dog who gets treated better than most children.
4. Outside of beer and writing, what are some of your other hobbies?
MMA, Design, Hockey (watching), Video Games, Food, etc.
Off The Beaten Path
1. If you were a style of beer, what style would be an why?
Imperial Stout. I’m big, complex, but not as in your face as an IPA or Lambic.
2. You were caught smuggling beer illegally, which has now been made punishable by death. Right before you are sent to the executioner, you are offered one last beer. What beer would you chose and why?
Trappist Westvleteren 12, just so I can say I finally tried it.
3. If I contracted you to brew a beer (or design a beer recipe) called “The Beer Wench” — what style would you chose and what, if any, extra ingredients would you add?
I’m not much of a brewer yet, wouldn’t do you justice!
4. If you could be a superhero, what would you want your superpowers to be?
5. What is one of the craziest things you have ever done and lived to tell the story?
That’s between me and Europe.
6. What are your thoughts on bacon?
It needs to finally be recognized as it’s own food group.
SPECIAL THANKS TO CHRIS FOR AN AWESOME INTERVIEW!