Many of us enjoy a nice frosty pint of thoughtfully crafted beer. We enjoy the beer, but do we give much thought as to where it came from? Many do, and it is possible to be a part of the brewing process. Beer has been brewed for many years. By 3000 BC, the Babylon's had already created twenty different varieties. There is no doubt that beer is a loved beverage; but in order to become a Brewmaster, you need to love more than just the taste of beer itself. There is a lot of work and creativity involved in making beer. Now that the craft beer industry is booming, there are many opportunities to become a brewing artist.
A Day in the Life of a Brewmaster
Brewmasters are the artists and chefs of the beer world. Positions vary depending on the brewery itself. Breweries can range from massive operating facilities to small microbreweries. Same applies for positions; they differ from location to location, with ones experience playing a role. There is much more to brewing beer than liking the way it tastes. Brewmasters;
- Main focus is on beer. They need to have an understanding of raw ingredients and how they'll interact to make a well balanced beer. Making their product unique, developing great flavour and producing high quality beer is the main objective.
- Can potentially oversee the whole brewery, sometimes even focusing on finances. They can manage a team ranging from one-two brewers, to fifty. It really depends on the brewery, but communication skills are crucial.
- Are not only responsible for making the beer taste great, but also ensuring it's safety. They need to keep their work area extremely clean. By doing so, they provide not only a safe beer, but a high quality product.
- Focus on the fermentation process; creating beer is a science.
Brewing beer is one of those crafts that someone can master without extensive education or training. Careers may start as a hobby. There are backyard brewers who have made their way up based on; their passion, knowledge and experience. With that being said, the majority of Brewmasters do have an educational background. Some breweries will gladly hire applicants whom have taken a college program such as; brewing management. Others are more prone to look for a university degree, ranging from; microbiology, management or even food science.
Depending on your location and role; salary will vary. The larger breweries tend to pay a higher salary, while the smaller locations tend to fall lower on the pay scale. Based on the American national average;
- A head Brewmaster makes $48,279 (ranging from 24-90K).
- An assistant Brewmaster makes $27,249 (ranging from 14-36K).
Developing Your Brewing Career
Your first step to becoming a Brewmaster involves an intense passion for creating and the art of brewing. If you have the passion, research exactly what you need to do in order to reach your goal. It is not a bad idea to go into a brewery and speak directly to the Brewmaster. Get a feel for the duties and roles in which you would be taking on. Every brewery will differ from the last. That is this most exciting part, so get a feel for exactly what type of brewing you would like to participate in. If you do not already have the training you need, make a checklist to accomplish crucial steps. Brewing beer is popular all around the world; you may have opportunities to explore other parts of the globe. So, if you're a 'beer lover' not just a beer drinker, explore the possibility of becoming a Brewmaster.
A Brief History of Beer. Retrieved on March 18th, 2014, from http://www.beeracademy.co.uk/beer-info/history-of-beer/
So...You Have a Passion For Brewing? Oregon State University. Retrieved on March 18, 2014, from http://oregonstate.edu/foodsci/sites/default/files/pdfs/interest_in_brewing_11-06-13.pdf
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