Monday, July 21, 2008

My Final Port of Call with Clipper City

When I joined the Clipper City Brewing Company in August of 2004, I wrote this:

I have accepted an opportunity to work with Hugh Sisson, a pioneer of Maryland craft beer, as a representative of his Clipper City Brewing Company .

I have great respect for what Sisson, lead brewer Scott Dietrich, and the entire team of the Clipper City Brewing Company have accomplished.

Specifically ...
1. There's the quality control evident throughout the portfolio.
2. There's the design of the brand extensions -- Clipper City, McHenry, Oxford Raspberry.
3. Finally, there's the introduction of the flavor-driven Heavy Seas line.

Together, these things became a coalescence irresistible to me.

As Territory Manager for Clipper City Brewing Company, I plan to continue to expand the reach of its brands throughout the District, Montgomery County, and Northern Virginia.

Since that point, my sales territory has increased dramatically to include all of Virginia, and then North Carolina, Georgia, and South Carolina as each of those states allowed beers of greater than 5.9% alcohol to be imported.

Since that point, Clipper City has itself changed. Some of its beers are now organic. Some of its beers are paradigms for new craft styles. Its roster of brands has grown from nine to sixteen, its basket of brewing medals brimming. And the cask ale! Ahh!

In 2004, Clipper City was a dynamic Baltimore, Maryland brewery. Today, Clipper City is truly an East Coast brewery, its beers sold and respected in 20 states along the East Coast and into the Midwest.

It has been an incredible voyage. I've met so many fascinating and beery folk: brewers, salespeople, wholesalers, beer shop owners and managers, beer lovers, and, in fact fascinating people of all sorts throughout the South.

That I have been part of that voyage has been my privilege. It has been exciting; it has been frustrating; but it has never been boring.

Thomas Cizauskas (l), Hugh Sisson (r) discuss beer in 2006.Beer is serious business

I sincerely thank Hugh Sisson, Brewmaster Ernesto Igot, Sales Manager Pat Helsel, and everyone, then and now, at the Clipper City Brewing Company for having included me in their wonderful voyage of good beer.

But now, I sail forth. As of 1 August 2008, I will leave the employ of Clipper City Brewing Company.

This blog --YoursForGood will continue, and with honest effort, improve, and even gain new perspectives. Look for more features on fermented fruit and distilled spirits. To all my readers, to those who have offered praise, and to those who have pointed out my factual errors: I thank you.

Beer, gentlefolk: beer is our business. And that is why the voyage continues.


  1. Tom,

    Wishing you the very best in your next endeavors. Will miss seeing you behind that Hop3 cask!


  2. Tom: Best wishes for your future endeavors. You've been a tremendous advocate for CCBC, bringing a friendly face to so many venues. With patience, skill, and a smile I've watched you pitch every level of customer successfully. You are very good at what you do and I hope we'll still be seeing you around.

    Regards -- Randy P.

  3. Tom - I sincerely hope that I may still run into you around the DC area for beer-related reasons. Ever since I met you at a CC tasting at Total in McLean, I've very much enjoyed talking to you at things like the OD fest and the Tuppers' 15,000th, and I appreciate your kindly written and thoughtful blog. You are a true gentleman, and I wish you the best of luck.

    Jeff S.

  4. Tom,

    Best wishes in the journey. You have been an amazing evangelist for Clipper City, craft beer, and real ale. The industry needs more thoughtful people like you.

    Like David said, I'll miss you serving Hop 3 on cask. You represented Clipper City's beers so well. Somehow it won't be the same.

  5. Thank you to all, here and elsewhere, for the kind comments.

  6. Actually Tom it has been MY privilege to have you on board. You will be sincerely missed, and I wish you all future success.

    Hugh Sisson


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