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Old 05-24-2012, 06:09 PM   #21
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You need to think outside of the box. You, just like everyone else, wants a brewery job. I would try to find a job at a craft beer bar first. It will let you experience all styles of beer (for free) and it you will be able to network with brewers, distributors, and most importantly brewery owners. Beer is a business and you need to know ALL sides of it.....not just brewing. On your own I would seriously be looking into becoming a BJCP judge and/or Cicerone....and of course keep refining your homebrewing skills.

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Old 05-25-2012, 07:13 PM   #22
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Phunhog, I'm definitely going to have to check those out; that definitely sounds like something that would set me apart from people who are just looking for any old job or people who simply think beer is pretty cool rather than something to make a career out of.

For anyone else interested, in the meantime I've applied to a small nanobrewery a couple of towns over from me, White Birch Brewery, for the possibility of an apprenticeship. That doesn't start until September, so in the meantime I plan on going to as many beer festivals and tastings as I can wangle.

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Old 05-25-2012, 10:56 PM   #23
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I was at a Firestone Walkers tasting room a few months ago. The bathroom is located pretty much right on the brewery floor. It was very interesting to stop and watch how a large brewery works. It was interesting but also kind of depressing. It's pretty much just a large, noisy factory. They make beer instead of orange juice. They were bottling that day. It was someone's job to close up the boxes and tape them. Talk about tedious, mind numbing work for hours and hours.

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Old 05-26-2012, 12:18 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Phunhog View Post
I was at a Firestone Walkers tasting room a few months ago. The bathroom is located pretty much right on the brewery floor. It was very interesting to stop and watch how a large brewery works. It was interesting but also kind of depressing. It's pretty much just a large, noisy factory. They make beer instead of orange juice. They were bottling that day. It was someone's job to close up the boxes and tape them. Talk about tedious, mind numbing work for hours and hours.
This has been my impression of all the sizeable craft breweries we've toured (O'Dell's, Fort Collins Brewing, New Belgium, Boulder, etc.). They are, when we push the product aside and change some of the processes, no different than a cannery putting up tomatoes.

Some are definitely nicer than others (New Glarus comes to mind), but the nicer the tour, with plenty of beer and gemütlichkeit, the more the distraction from what it is: a factory.

If one can go to work with the same enthusiasm on the first anniversary following employment, then it may, indeed, be something to stick with. I applied that test to my chosen line of work (high school teaching) and found that I could stick with it for 32 years, and enjoy the teaching from first to last.
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Old 05-26-2012, 01:08 PM   #25
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Brew schools are booked for years into the future? What a scam. Ask your average 2012 law graduate what happens when trade schools churn out thousands more graduates than there are jobs.

What's that? There are tons of new jobs coming on-line? Yeah, either the nano that'll be closed by the time you get in and graduate, the startup that'll hire you and your degree for $10/hr, or the established brewery that will weigh your degree against the guy with a degree from 2009 and five years of experience.

I highly advise anyone considering putting down a deposit for 2015 brew school to spend their time either working in a brewery, through whatever means, or saving money at their current job while writing up a business plan to open their own shop.

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Old 05-26-2012, 03:20 PM   #26
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I would say go to the brewery in person to offer if you are able to. I hate how so many businesses only accept resumes online nowadays. It's such a faceless medium. All employers see you as is a resume, it makes it very easy for them to disregard you. If you go in person though they can get to know you as a person and will be more inclined to consider hiring you.
As an employer, I only accept resumes online and have had to use a generic email to do so. I dont allow walk-ins and keep my doors locked from solicitors and would be thieves. The response I have received from postings has net a large stack of resumes. A majority of which belong to immature jackasses whom I would never want to meet. The ones who present themselves well get an interview. It is the nature of the beast. Word to the wise, if you are looking for a job please change your voice message on your phone. Those starting with "Yo..." Or "Dude...." Will never get a chance. First impressions are just that.
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Old 05-26-2012, 04:56 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by Rundownhouse View Post
Brew schools are booked for years into the future? What a scam. Ask your average 2012 law graduate what happens when trade schools churn out thousands more graduates than there are jobs.

What's that? There are tons of new jobs coming on-line? Yeah, either the nano that'll be closed by the time you get in and graduate, the startup that'll hire you and your degree for $10/hr, or the established brewery that will weigh your degree against the guy with a degree from 2009 and five years of experience.

I highly advise anyone considering putting down a deposit for 2015 brew school to spend their time either working in a brewery, through whatever means, or saving money at their current job while writing up a business plan to open their own shop.
While I don't necessarily subscribe to everything in the quoted post.....there's certainly truth in it. Craft beer, beginning in the late 1970's, has had quite a long run of growth. However, there are a number of myths operating to convince some people that their destiny lies in making beer.

1. Simple: "It's been going on this long, it'll keep going." Yep. That's what they said in the dot-com boom in the 1990s and the real estate bubble a decade later. Well, it's also what they said back in the late 1920's, and look what happened.

2. I brew beer at home, brewing commercially is just a matter of scale. No, it isn't. This has been discussed endlessly on this and other forums. There is also a qualitative difference: it lies in the word "commercially." It's no longer a fun hobby over a propane burner in the garage, it's a BUSINESS.

3. Youth and enthusiasm can make up for knowledge and experience. Don't you believe it.

4. (This is, IMHO, a myth that is not yet fully realized, but I believe it's coming, and soon enough). If I get a degree in X, I'll find a job that pays well in something I love to do. Fact: Lots of people with advanced degrees are waiting tables, or doing something completely other than what it says on that degree or certificate. Fact: Seven out of ten people don't particularly like their job, and a significant percentage of those hate it. Fact: If you find something you love to do, you may very well have to accept lower compensation. And for life. Your life. I was a public school teacher for 32 years, and that was exactly my situation. I wouldn't have traded the job for anything else you can name, but.....well, you may have heard that teachers don't exactly make a lot of money. And we have to have college degrees and everything!
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Old 05-26-2012, 08:03 PM   #28
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IMHO working for a brewery wouldn't really be that interesting once you've gotten over the scale of the batches and machinery you might be using. Most brewery's constantly brew the same 3 to 5 beers/styles which for me is the exact opposite of what I enjoy about homebrewing. I thoroughly enjoy never having to brew the same thing twice and I never have to live up to the likes or expectations of others. I think I'll go brew another double ipa...

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Old 05-27-2012, 05:07 AM   #29
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Good luck with your quest. While some jobs may not be glamorous or exciting just being in a place you like is important and may give you opportunity to move up to something better in the field.

I agree with those that say to get to know the people at brewerys as many times in a close knit industry someone will say they need to hire and a friend will let them know if they know of anyone looking - it may never get to resumes.

If it does, make sure yours stands out. Learn all you can about beer. Then make a great homebrew. Put together an incredible resume. Then do something different like send it out with a coupon for an incredible homebrew which you will personally deliver. (Just don't send it to ones too far away)

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Old 05-27-2012, 06:26 AM   #30
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As someone who is working in the industry, it will be next to impossible to start in brewing. Your best bet would be to start as a packaging person and work your way into being a brewer. That is what I am doing and what most of the other packaging techs are doing. It is a fun, yes dirty, but fun job. It is all about timing and being willing to travel to where the job is. Don't limit yourself to your area.

Good luck

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