Bell’s, in the beery world you can’t go a day without hearing something about it. Lately I feel like I am completely surrounded by it. Of course when you live pretty much next door to one of the nation’s larger craft breweries it tends to permeate the air you breathe. This isn’t a bad thing. When you consider that for the most part craft breweries sole advertising comes from word of mouth, for a brewery like Bell’s to be known by so many is a pretty big deal.
This is also a sign of the great community that comes from craft beer. A company the size of Bell’s could spend its time focused in my worldly pursuits, but they still maintain their roots. The Eccentric Cafe is a community gathering place and attached there you will still find the general store; the home brew element of Bell’s that started it all.
David Curtis is the general manager of Bell’s General Store. Under his watch they have been working within the community of home brewers to increase their involvement. This has included a monthly brewing demo as well as active involvment with the KLOB (Kalamazoo Libation Organization of Brewers). He is also an accomplished home brewer. It wasn’t too long ago that he won Arbor Brewing Company’s ABC Brews crews contest. He credits this win with his launch into the larger world of brewing. It was after this win that he spent time working at Arcadia Brewing Company and his move to Bell’s.
From here we go to the questions:
1. What was the beer moment, when you knew you wanted to become involved with the craft beer renaissance?
I attended the very first Michigan Brewer’s Guild Winter Beer Festival in 2006 in Lansing. It was my first beer festival and I was blown away with the energy and passion that so many of these people had about craft beer. It was much smaller than the festival has grown to today, but sticks in my head as an eye opening experience to the industry that I’ve grown to love so much these days. Great people enjoying great beer together.
2. If you could have any beer in your hand right now, what would it be?
I make a red IPA that makes me pretty happy. I’ve yet to find an occasion where I haven’t enjoyed that one. If not that, Bell’s Kalamazoo Stout is my go-to.
3. Can you describe your beer life in a song lyric/title? If so what would you choose?
Song Title: Smells Like Teen Spirit. That’s me.
4. Do you have a steady beer, or do you like to “play the field?”
I very much play the field. My personal approach to enjoying beer is that I never have the same beer twice in one night. I very much prefer small amounts of several beers over one or two (or more) big ones.
5. Crowded smoky bar or back porch watching the clouds float across the sky?
I’m not a bar guy. I enjoy going out and having a couple beers with my wife or friends now and then, but I’d much rather sit on my deck and count stars or sit by a fire in the backyard and enjoy a couple beers with those same people.
And the lame one…
If tin whistles are made of tin, what do they make fog horns out of?
Time for a pint…