Firestone Walker began as a small brewery with roots in the wine country on California’s Central Coast. They are now an internationally acclaimed, award-winning craft brewery with a singular purpose – to craft the world’s best beers. Firestone Walker was founded in 1996 by Adam Firestone and his brother-in-law David Walker. Mr. Walker kindly agreed to let us interview him and we repaid his kindness by asking him…5 STUPID QUESTIONS.
1. Firestone Walker is clearly one of America’s most accomplished craft breweries. And as its co- founder, you could be talking with any number of “credible” journalists. So, why in the world did you ever agree to be profiled by us? What were you thinking?
2. You’re a Brit right? How did you end up at a brewery in California? Were your parents disappointed?
My mother was disappointed…she’s marginally more cheerful than Margaret Thatcher and I am often asked how I can abide living so far from England…it’s not a debate I often win with her. California is an easy place to “end up” and my home now….the search for real beer when I arrived was a no brainer.
3. You started this company with your brother-in-law, Adam Firestone. How does that dynamic work? Are you pissed that we brought this up?
No, good question. Divide and conquer is the best remedy for a family partnership. We manage different elements of the brewery and that works.
4. Let’s get serious for a moment…The craft beer industry has experienced a tremendous run over the last decade. With so much growth in the biz and with so many new breweries coming on board almost daily, do you worry that we could be reaching some sort of saturation point? What do see for the industry going forward?
More the merrier! The more choice available to the consumer, the better and fresher the beer will need to be to keep them interested. Brewers will have to be brilliant to thrive. The evolution will be chaotic at times for everyone; including the punter (drinker) but the end result will be worth it.
5. Firestone Walker has brewed some truly amazing beers over the years, many of them national and international award winners. If you could pick just one beer that you could call your “very best” – what would that beer be? And don’t try to weasel out of this!
Velvet Merkin….Bourbon Barrel aged English Oatmeal Stout…hard to find and easy to sup.
1) Everyone has a “house beer”- a beer that’s their staple at home – What’s yours?
DBA (Double Barrel Ale) an English Pale Ale, partially fermented in Oak Barrels, elegantly hopped and beautifully balanced.