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Featured Beer Blogger: DAVE ISSER

Featured Beer Blogger: DAVE ISSER


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!


Beer Blogger Interview

Full name: Dave Isser
Internet nickname (if applicable): microbrewster
Twitter handle: @brews_clues
Name of blog: Brews Clues
Current location: Los Angeles

Background “Snapshot”

1. Where did you grow up?

Ashland, Oregon

2. What sports if any did you play growing up, through college and beyond?

Soccer, skiing, and tennis

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 was visiting my brother at college and went to a party. I don’t remember what kind of beer it was, but probably some watered down bud light or something. Not a memorable beer experience, but I had a good time.

5. Where, if applicable, did you go to college? What did you study? What additional activities, organizations, sports did you partake in during college?

I went to college at UPenn and studied English. The major itself hasn’t opened too many doors, but it has made me a decent writer.


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:

I don’t really remember my very first, but it probably involved drinking Rogue’s Shakespeare Stout as Rogue was from my hometown in Oregon and that was my favorite beer for many years.

2. Have you have additional craft beer epiphanies since the first? Detail as many of them as you wish:

Every time I try a new beer that’s delicious, surprises me, or challenges me, I’m reminded of why I love beers. There are far too many to mention, but here are a few highlights for me:
Stone 13th Anniversary
Pliny the Elder
Getting Mikkeller’s Black Hole Stout on tap in Amsterdam
the 2008 Port Brewing High Tide IPA
Stone Self-Righteous
Deschutes Black Hole Sun IPA
Avery Maharaja.


Beer Blog Background

1. How long have you been writing your beer blog?

Just over three years, although not much happened during that first year.

2. What inspired you to start writing your blog?

A few years before I started writing, I began keeping an excel spreadsheet of all the beers I had tried. People kept telling me that I needed to do something bigger than just keep an excel spreadsheet, so I tried a blog.

3. Why did you chose the name of your blog?

An ex-girlfriend suggested it, and since I didn’t have anything better I went with it. I was never that wild about it, but people always say how much they like it, so it stuck.

4. What are you personal goals for your blog? What do you hope to achieve with it?

World peace through beer.

5. What is one of the coolest things that happened to you as a result of being a beer blogger?

Hmmm, well this interview is pretty cool. It’s been interesting to see how people respond to my beer knowledge. Whenever I hang out with friends, they’re always embarrassed to show me what beer they’ve brought cause they’re not sure if it’s good. I always say, I love good beer, but I’m not a snob about it.

6. What are you top 3 favorite beer blogs/beer websites?


Beer Talk

1. What are your top 3 favorite beer styles?

  • Russian Imperial Stout
  • Imperial IPA
  • Barleywine

2. What are your top 3 favorite breweries?

Oh man, I hate to limit it to just three, especially cause it’s always changing by who’s doing the most interesting stuff. But right now I’d say:

  • Russian River
  • Mikkeller
  • Stone

3. If you could work with or for any one brewery, which one would it be and why?

I think Vinnie at Russian River could probably enlighten me the most about beer and brewing, but you have to imagine getting drunk with the Brewdog guys would be hilarious.

4. Are you a homebrewer? If yes, what is the most unique and interesting beer recipes you’ve brewed as a homebrewer?

Yeah, I started about a year and a half ago and still have a lot to learn, but my brews are getting better. I did a double IPA called The Resistance, which I dry hopped with Simcoe and everyone really liked. My last beer was a bit too ambitious: a black IPA dry hopped with fresh organic hops. Not sure where that one went wrong, but you can read about both of those beers on the blog. Right now I’m working on a Ginger Saison that I got out of Sam Calagione’s Extreme Brewing book, and a Russian Imperial that I’m aging with bourbon soaked oak chips; I have high hopes for the stout.

5. Do you have any beer certifications (BJCP, Cicerone, Siebel, American Brewers Guild)?? If so, what are they?

No, I’m waiting till I can grow a pencil mustache and own a tuxedo.

6. What is your favorite beer and food pairing?

I have to go with American IPA and burger. I realize that’s not all that fancy, but LA is a city of burgers and so many of the good places to get beer down here also have great burgers.


The Personal Side

1. What is your current day job?

I edit documentaries and science shows for TV.

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?

Probably be a chef. I love cooking and have been doing a lot of recipes with beer recently.

3. Are you married? Children?

No, but I have an amazing girlfriend that loves beer almost as much as I do.

4. Outside of beer and writing, what are some of your other hobbies?

Are there other hobbies?


Off The Beaten Path

1. If you were a style of beer, what style would be an why?

Probably a Belgian IPA: bitter and bright from the pacific northwest with a dry humor and wild streak from the Belgian yeast.

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?

I have trouble believing that a country that is cool enough to give you a final beer before you die would also make beer smuggling punishable by death. But I think I’d probably go with Pliny the Elder. I drink it all the time and maybe he could offer some infinite wisdom in my final moments.

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?

Belgian Strong Dark Ale. In your face with sweetness and complexity. Probably do Belgian candy sugar, cherries and some wilder yeast strain.

4. If you could be a superhero, what would you want your superpowers to be?

The power to eat spaghetti without ever getting full.

5. What is one of the craziest things you have ever done and lived to tell the story?

I’m always getting myself into something interesting. Most recently, I climbed Angel’s Landing in Zion while it was completely snow and ice covered. I’ve also done a fair amount of questionable spelunking.

6. What are your thoughts on bacon?

I’ve always wanted to do a breakfast with eggs, bacon, and a smoked porter or possibly Rogue’s Chipotle Ale. Those two styles just seem like they’d be so good with bacon.



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