moonlight brewing co

Moonlight Brewing Co-Owners Brian Hunt and Patrick Rue

Moonlight Brewing co-owners Brian Hunt and Patrick Rue join Harry Duke and Herlinda Heras on Brew Ha Ha today. Brian is the founder of Moonlight Brewing and Patrick Rue is now a co-owner. Patrick is the former owner of “Bruery” in Orange County which he sold. After opening a Moonlight Czech Pils Reality Czech, we hear their stories. Patrick started brewing in 1992 and just kept at it. He started in a barn near the airport then to Graton 10 years later then to Coffey Lane and has been there since then. It’s walking distance for lucky residents of Santa Rosa. Lagunitas bought 50% of Moonlight, then Heineken bought Lagunitas. Now Moonlight is back local with Patrick Rue. Brian gets to tell the story of looking for just the right partner for a long time. Patrick has been a fan of Moonlight since drinking […]

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pond farm brewing

Pond Farm Brewing Co.

Pond Farm Brewing Company co-owners and co-founders Trevor and Stephanie Martens join Harry Duke and Herlinda Heras on Brew Ha Ha today. They own and operate Pond Farm Brewing in nearby San Rafael, California. The name Pond Farm Brewing has a fun history. Pond Farm was an artists’ residency and workshop that started in the 1940s, in Guerneville. It became known for pottery in the 1950s as the studio of Marguerite Wildenhain, a famous potter originally from Germany. Trevor’s father was there so he remembers how the community was focused on craft and disciplined work habits. They also have other professional careers. When they chose the name, they had not chosen the location yet. Trevor tells about the transition from aerospace engineering to brewing. He took an internship at Fogbelt, to see how the hobby could feel as a full time job. Among all […]

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freshtival

Freshtival is Back!

Freshtival 2022 is the subject today with Sayre Piotrkowski from Hen House Brewing, who joins Harry Duke and Herlinda Heras on Brew Ha Ha. Freshtival is a Hen House event, “a celebration of the art of freshness” that reflects their mission statement. Covid stopped the Freshtival for a couple of years but it is back now for 2022. The Freshtival takes place on June 25, 2022, 1:00 PM to 6:00 PM, at SOMO Village in Rhonert Park. Tickets are available on Eventbrite dot com. Ticket prices are lower for advance purchase. Hen House Brewing makes extra efforts to enforce their standards of “second half beer quality.” That means their beer is never warm stored, all of their trucks are refrigerated and the beer goes directly into cold storage at delivery. This is an important distinction for Hen House in the craft beer competitive environment. […]

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golden state cider

Golden State Cider and Seismic Brewing

Golden State Cider’s new owner and Seismic Brewery founder Christopher Jackson is back on Brew Ha Ha with Harry Duke and Herlinda Heras. He was last on Brew Ha Ha on this episode that aired back on July 2, 2019, the day before they opened the Sebastopol taproom. They are tasting some cider called Save the Gravenstein, which Chris calls an expression of Sonoma County Gravenstein apples. He has known the partners of Golden State for a long time. He would like to take Golden State Cider national, that is the goal. Some of their apples already come from the Pacific Northwest but they could source apples from places like Saratoga, NY too. Sustainability for the Long Term He explains that brands like Seismic and Golden State could be managed for exploitation but he has other ideas. We hear about their desire to run […]

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seismic tremor lager

Seismic Brewing Co. and Tremor

We have two guest brewers from Seismic Brewing Co. on Brew Ha Ha today, Anthony Ayez aka Turbo and Christian Toran, brewing engineer. They are celebrating Seismic’s 5th anniversary this year. Tremor is their sister brewery, all organic and all locally sourced. They have won several important awards lately for their Tremor California Light Lager. It won 2021 Gold medal at Great American Beer fest and a silver the year before. It also just won at the World Beer Cup in Minneapolis. This international award only happens every other year and it is the biggest award in the business. Seismic grew up developing recipes in their owner’s garage, and now they run a sustainable brewery in Santa Rosa. They have world-class water re-use practices. They have been located in the Barlow in Sebastopol for the last three years. May 20-22 they are throwing a […]

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Hendrick Verspecht

Hendrick Verspecht from cuVer Brewery

Hendrick Verspecht joins Herlinda Heras and Harry Duke today on Brew Ha Ha. Hendrick is a co-founder of the first authentic Belgian-style brewery in Sonoma County, cuVer Brewery. The last time he was on Brew Ha Ha was this episode on September 16, 2021, when cuVer was just about to open their Windsor location to the public. Since then the brewery has won an important award and has seen an increase in orders for its award-winning brew. He learned brewing in his garage at home in Belgium and studied plant biology at university in Belgium. Now the family has this brewery in Windsor with a lot of others nearby. Tara Nurin will call in from Minneapolis, Minnesota to report on the Craft Brewers Conference. They had the most entries they have ever had at this year’s edition. Tara’s call is posted separately on this […]

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tara nurin craft brewers

Tara Nurin at Craft Brewers Conference + NZ Hops

On this episode of the Brew Ha Ha podcast, Tara Nurin calls in from Minneapolis, Minnesota, to report on the Craft Brewers Conference and Brew Expo America. She writes about the business of beverage and spirits for Forbes magazine. She has recently published a book, A Woman’s Place Is In The Brewhouse, which Herlinda reports has surpassed 10,000 sales on that big website that people buy stuff from, and she is also thee most frequent guest ever to appear on Brew Ha Ha. Tara Nurin tells the story starting with the great relief everyone felt, to be around friends and colleagues again. Natalie Cilurzo was the keynote speaker and people are coming away with a good feeling about it all. Herlinda mentions that Bart Watson, economist for the Brewer’s Association, has published some data that looks good even after the pandemic. Tara tells of […]

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all about beer

All About Beer is Back Online

Longtime beer journalist John Holl is calling in to Brew Ha Ha to talk to Herlinda Heras and Harry Duke about the relaunch of All About Beer, a once-leading online magazine that covered the craft beer revolution.  The magazine launched in 1979 when Mike and Bunny Bozak had an intuitive sense that something big was about to happen in the beer world. Now, John Holl and Andy Crouch are bringing the online magazine back. Andy Crouch was the founding columnist at Beer Advocate Magazine. The founders sold the magazine to new owners who sold it to others in 2019 who ended up in bankruptcy, after which the magazine’s assets reverted to the earlier owners, Daniel and Julie. They wanted the 40-year-old brand to continue, as the publication of record for craft brewing. The new All About Beer is online now. John Holl describes their […]

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sandro tamburin

Sandro Tamburin of Old Possum Brewing

Sandro Tamburin,  Old Possum Brewing Co. brewer, joins Herlinda Heras and Harry Duke on today’s Brew Ha Ha. Herlinda Heras  was recently in Bologna, Milano and other parts of northern Italy to be a judge at the Italian national beer competition. She has brought some Peroni beer back, it is a popular lager. And since she was there at Easter, she brought back a “colomba pasquale” which is a kind of cake called an “Easter dove” which is a sweet egg bread similar to panettone (without the bits of candied fruit) shaped like a dove in flight. There were 2000 beers and 63 judges (75% of whom were Italian) at the Birra dell’Anno, the annual Italian national beer competition. On the first night, the Italians all brought something from their region. She tasted the best buffalo mozzarella, for example. The winners will be announced […]

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spirit works

Spirit Works Distillery partner Timo Marshall

Timo Marshall from Spirit Works Distillery joins Harry Duke on Brew Ha Ha today in the KSRO studios. Spirit Works Distillery is coming into its tenth year. Based in the Barlow, they are a small family run operation, “grain to glass.” They have a Spirit Club too. They are perhaps best known for their Sloe Gin and their Bourbon has won several awards recently, including a “Best Of” from the North Bay Bohemian.  In 2020 they won Distillery of the Year, which was “hugely flattering” but there was no celebration due to the pandemic. The award focusses on how the distillery operates and their general philosophy as well as quality of product. They received by a Zoom conference. For him and his wife Ashby, the head distiller, they felt like it was a real career milestone. Timo was born in Britian and became interested in […]

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