Pubcast 400 – THANKS to Our Listeners and The Brewers!!

This weeks’ episode is a retrospective of our show and some of the milestones in our first 399 shows. It’s thanks to all our listeners who keep us recording each episode, and thanks to all the brewers who have given their time to talk to us. Plus thanks to all my co-hosts along the way, especially the ‘original’ Yankee, Lingo! We’ve drunk a bunch of brews on our journey, and the last 17 years have been a blast, so we’ll keep podcasting as long as we can.  Here’s our story so far…

The first podcast was published in Oct 2006 (Pubcast #1), back in ‘Phase 1’ of podcasting history. With the ‘original’ Yankee, my chum Mike ‘Lingo’ Lingafelter, we decided we would like to bring a little ‘pub chat’ to the internet. We had a different theme tune and a different approach to the show, with more variety, music, and full production segments, but still sampling beers along the way. The first beers we drank were Blue Goat Doppelbock from New Holland Brewing, and a Double Pale Ale from He’brew. Like us, New Holland is still going strong, but He’brew closed, then relaunched in 2022.

In the early days, we published once a fortnight (every two weeks to you Yanks!), our first brewer interview was recorded when The Brit went to Hawaii for a vacation. On Feb 19, 2007 in Pubcast #9, The Brit talked with the then independent Kona Brewing‘s head brewer, Thom Tash.  We even got nominated that year for a Podcast Award, although we didn’t win…and maybe you can tell why if you listen to those early podcasts!

The next milestone came in November of 2007, when we recorded a live show from the Globe pub in Chicago, joining up with many other Chicago podcasters, and local band Beatnik Turtle. This was a 2 episode effort, (Pubcast #28-1, Pubcast#28-2) and despite technical difficulties we had a great time! Along the way we have recorded other live shows, but it’s really a ‘stressful’ event to ensure the audience can hear you properly without the proper PAs!

2008 saw us focusing more on craft beer, and doing more remote recordings. In Pubcast #36, The Brit and  guest host/homebrewer Dave G, visited The Drunk Monk Challenge homebrew competition, held at Walter Payton’s Roundhouse (now Two Brothers Roundhouse).

Then we took a break between April 2007 show 38 and March 2008 show 39 while The Brit installed his British Pub studio which opened officially in Pubcast #50.

In Nov 2009 and Pubcast #51, we recorded a show at the legendary, but now gone, John’s Tavern in Winfield IL. There we first met with a man who was soon to become a good friend and co-host for the show, Mark Naski.  Mark was a genius when it came to his knowledge of brewing and beer styles, and was instrumental in making the podcast change into what it has become today. He taught us so much about craft beer, and along the way helped a local brewery with advice about their recipes. Sadly Mark was taken from us in 2021, and we miss him dearly.

In December 2010, The Brit recorded the first brewery remote when he visited Oskar Blues in Longmont CO., and experienced Ten Fidy on tap for the first time. In 2013, the boom of the craft beer industry, we really started to visit breweries for interviews with the brewers. Some of our first recordings were with breweries that are still around today such as Tighthead Brewing (Pubcast#103), Church Street (Pubcast#107), and Penrose Brewing (Pubcast#110).

We celebrated Pubcast #100 in Dec 2012, and met our chum and Illinois beer historian John Bittermann in Pubcast #161 Oct 2015. By that time, Mark was a regular co-host as Lingo had changed jobs and couldn’t make it to all the recordings.

It was after that show that we really started to focus on brewery and brewer interviews, when the Illinois craft beer scene was really starting to grow.

Our first collaboration brew was with Hopvine Brewing and brewmaster Ken McMullen. It was an English pale ale called HMQ90 (Pubcast #198), brewed to celebrate the 90th birthday of Queen Elizabeth II, with a recipe from Mark Naski. Ken has since gone on to become another good friend and current co-host of the show, and moved over to help start Fox Republic Brewing.

Chuck Fort, Sr. Brewing Consultant (but then brewer) at Church Street Brewing, also joined the crew first as a regular guest and then by Pubcast #243, as co-host. Both Chuck and Ken continue to bring a wealth of industry knowledge…plus they’re really good chums!

We experimented with video back in 2018 with a beer review show recorded at Church Street Brewing, (Barrel of Monks Beer Review), and the result was ‘simple’ at best. We then started up our YouTube channel in 2020 as a result of the Covid pandemic shutting down our ability to have face-to-face contact with people. Like many others, we used Zoom to chat with brewers on our Virtual Happy Hours, and then used the medium to continue reviewing brews, and then test brewers’ palates with a Blind Taste Challenge series.

And that brings us up-to-date where today we try to go out and interview as many brewers at their breweries as time permits. Here’s a link to a page that lists all our featured brewery interviews. Alas, not all of the breweries are still in business, but we have a historical record on file of the good times when they were going strong. We’re very proud of the content we produce, and hope you have enjoyed listening to them as much as we have enjoyed recording them!

Here’s to the next milestone of 500, and here’s to the craft beer industry and those hard working brewers!!  CHEERS!

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