On moving from SF to PDX ☔ ... I move in 3 days. That's worth a touch of reflection.

6 pack newsletter Dec 14, 2021

Hey beer geek,

I hope your weekend was fun. Mine was filled with going away parties and packing boxes — me and my lady are moving to Portland, OR in four days! On Friday night I hosted a going away party at my bar in San Francisco, Old Devil Moon. It was quite bittersweet to see my friends come together to wish me well. I'm leaving Old Devil Moon in the very capable hands of my partners, who have GM'ed it from the beginning. I'm holding on to my stake and will be helping out with event planning and social media, things I can do from a distance. If you're ever in SF, pop into ODM for one of the best beer lists in the city (as well as fancy cocktails and Louisiana-influenced bites). 

I also went to an annual holiday party on Saturday night. My best friend since 9th grade moved to SF soon after me, in 2009 (we grew up in SE Florida). I think this was the 10th year I’ve been to he and his wife’s holiday party. I was the best man in his wedding just a few months back. It’s tough to leave friends like that behind. My community here in the San Francisco-Bay Area goes wide and deep after 14 years here, especially when it comes to the amazing beer community, which I’ll miss sorely. At the same time, over the years I’ve seen the majority of my friends and acquaintances leave. Most anyone who has designs on perhaps owning a home, having a family, or saving any money whatsoever eventually gets forced out of the area unless they’re DINKS who both make serious tech money (that’s “two incomes, no kids”). The average home here costs a laughable $1,300,000. Yes, one point three million. WTF. I have a lot of thoughts about the intersections of the supposedly progressive politics of San Francisco and its citizens, zoning and neighborhood groups keeping new housing from being built, our homelessness issues, and so on, but that’s for some very different essay I’ll probably never write.

I put a lot of myself into building community in this place — I landed here in 2008 and though some of the old timers may scoff to hear me say it, I was an early-ish part of the craft beer community here. The number of American breweries really started to hockey stick around 2010. The San Francisco beer scene has existed since way before the term “microbrew” was cool. SF-based Anchor Brewing and nearby breweries they influenced like New Albion and Sierra Nevada helped lead the modern charge. I see my buddy Pete Slosberg of Pete’s Wicked Ale fame around town on a regular basis (at least I did, pre-Covid). I got to live in the Bay Area for one of the most exciting moments for beer in American history, the blossoming of the modern craft beer movement. My role has been small but rewarding. 

It’s a bit frustrating to have to leave, but I’m SUPER excited about a change of scenery and reconnecting with the many friends I know in Portland. It’s not like their beer scene sucks, either, it’s saturated with good beer. And hey, maybe I’ll have a little money left at the end of the month for some of those (relatively) reasonably priced pints they’ve got up there, ha! 

One of the things I’m most excited about is that in Portland I’ll finally have the space to build out a real studio for producing Beer Scholar courses and other content. It’s going to be freeing to have some space for change. I’m also excited about the opportunities I’ll have for outdoorsy action. The Bay Area has stunning outdoors, but when it takes 45 minutes to cross town before even going anywhere, nothing feels very accessible. I have high hopes. 

If you’re in Portland and want to get a beer, hit me up. I’d also appreciate any beer-related or NA recommendations for places to check out. Here’s to celebrating the holidays in a new city and to a bright future for all of us, wherever we are! --Chris


I released my new Online Course for the Certified Beer Server exam three weeks ago now and it's going great! Since December 1st students have completed 245 lectures! The feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. 


TV to Check Out

The star studded (seriously) 1993 live action Super Mario Bros movie notwithstanding, most video game based movies have not been great. That said, if you dig sci fi, steampunk, magic, or highly stylized animation, you absolutely MUST check out Arcane on Netflix. The main characters are a couple of badass sisters (it passes the Bechdel Test with flying colors). It's based on League of Legends mythology and overall it's AWESOME. Here's the trailer.




I'm sticking with this list for another week! Like many of you, I got my Spotify yearly wrap up last week. My top 5 for 2021: 
  1. Boards of Canada
  2. El Michels Affair
  3. The Black Keys
  4. Massive Attack
  5. MF DOOM
Dope list. Give a listen if you're not familiar with any of those and let me know what you think. Also, if you know another artist I should check out, hit me back. 

Cheers y'all!

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