So when did work on the brewery begin?
Ken and I pushed "go" on this in September 2011 and by Dec. 1, 2011, we had our finances put together, we had the lease signed on this building and then we broke ground in about February 2012. The first batch of beer, I believe, was June 10, 2012.
I'd be remiss if we delved any deeper into this without getting Annie's portion of the story. You told us a story earlier about how you met while working as mountain guides, and I'm just trying to figure out how Point A got to Point B between mountaineering and brewing.
Do you want me to tell it an you fill in the gaps?
Yeah, you can do that. Because in his whole story of brewing, I was in the background. I can do that part. But go ahead, you start out and I'll let you talk a little more.
Annie and I met in the British Columbia coastal mountain range as mountaineering guides. We actually weren't very fond of each other at first. I was young and arrogant and she was feisty and young and we had a clash, but it wasn't until after our first summer guiding with each other that we made amends over beers. It was from that point on that we realized ...
At the end of the first summer we had beers and it was like "Oh, wait, maybe I don't think you're kind of a jerk."
"Why don't we go climb mountains and ski together this winter." That's definitely how our journey started into a friendship based around beer, mountains and good people. Our mantra back in those days was "All I need is beer and gear and everything in between." The love of beer has been driven less around the beer itself and more around the people that it brings, the stories that it brings and how it brings people together. We always thought that if you're going to drink beer with your friends, they deserve the best. That's always been the driving thing and the most fun part about making beer ... sharing it with your family, with your friends, your wife and your family and new friends.
So Annie and my love of mountains turned into a love of beer, and it became everything our family was based around. Our kids have grown up in a very beery world, and Annie's always been working alongside me at different breweries, helping out with social media and marketing ...