Comments to blog posts, by their very appended nature and often brief content, are easily overlooked. Here is one, written in response to my post ...
I've always been fascinated with the early animus towards Jim Koch. Oh...my...God! He didn't brew his own beer; he contracted another brewer to make it and used his money to nuture the other important components of good beer...distribution and marketing.
This smudge campaign went on for years until he startd to win a couple of awards at the GABF. Of course that wasn't good enough and the rumors started circulating that he had bribed or stacked his way to the winner's circle.
Now I have my theories where all this purism began, who subtley insinuated that Koch's way was the wrong way, but I do know this...when he started advertising in all the Papazian/BA/Zymurgy/New Brewer rags, suddenly he wasn't a bad guy. Hell, he was even being quoted in these mags.
He started the LongShot event for homebrewers and yet still, go over to one of the beer rating sites and there continues to be a lingering animosity towards Koch, the latest being that it's somehow it's his fault that homebrewer Mike McDole’s LongShot winning double IPA couldn't (wouldn't) be made. Forget the fact that the brew uses something like 11 varieties of the more esoteric and unavailable hops; somehow it was Koch's fault. In actuality, McDole agreed with Koch to wait until next year when the hops might be available for the brewing of the IPA.
So yeah, now how will the geek squad react because Koch's releasing a boatload of hops to brewers? Should be interesting.
On a sidenote; When I was writing Beer & Food: An American History, I contacted Boston Beer Company to see if I could use a few of their beer/food recipes in my book. Koch's people liked the book's theme and the next thing you know, Jim Koch's writing the foreword for the book.
What makes this interesting, and to me, shows how open and approachable Koch is, I had the hardest time trying to work with another brewer icon (HINT: West Coast, trolleys)) who was more interested in preserving his place in American brewing history than helping out a broken-down beer writer. Honestly, I never got to talk to him since his staff seemed more interested in me devoting page after page about "him" rather than the theme of the book.
Koch, on the other hand, embraced the larger scope of the book, beer and food and its place in American brewing and culinary history and didn't try to have me instead write a chapter devoted just to him.