Saturday, March 05, 2005

Clipper Serendipity

I was hosting an in-store tasting at Cleveland Park Liquors in Washington, D.C. last night: pouring various Clipper City beers and flogging a few cases in the process!

One younger gentleman hovered about for a few minutes, listening to my spiel.

After a few minutes, he asked: "Are you with the distributor or with the brewery?". "With the brewery", I replied.

Well, my name is Brett ****. In late 1995, I was one of the first employees at Clipper City. I worked on the bottling line with lead brewers Tom Flores and Jerry Rush. Things were frenzied then, but a lot of fun, as in any start-up operation.

During the bottling runs, I would hope for a few cases, say 3 or so, of under-fills. We were allowed to take them home. But if there were too many, owner Hugh Sisson would have us empty the bottles, clean and sanitize them, and refill them. Money was tight: the bottles were worth more than the beer!

'Craft' beer history from someone who might not have been been mentioned in the chronicles ... but is now.

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