This western Massachusetts resident and today’s Seven Question beer Sunday guest has frequented many of my Breakfast at the Brewery events, pre-COVID of course. I have also run into him while at other breweries throughout Mass as well. Chris, aka @the_beer_explorer on the IG, is the quintessential connoisseur of this liquid gold we call hops, barley, yeast, & water.
Chris is a respectful, gentle, kind soul. Well, that’s the way he comes across to me. He is the type of guy you can hang with and just talk beer all day long. It’s always a pleasure to see him in person as well. His answers below are well thought out and very enjoyable to read. Slide to the bottom to see what he thinks of Nashville Hot Fried Chicken and Waffle Stout…LOL!!!
Cheers, Chris, and to all, have a great week of beer tasting!
- What is your name and location?
Chris from West Springfield.
- What is your day job?
Hampden County Courthouse.
- Where can we find you on the socials including Untapp’d?
Untappd – thebeebo8 & Instagram @the_beer_explorer
1 – Do you prefer a clear piney West Coast IPA or hazy juicy New England IPA?
Having access to so many amazing hazy IPA’s, I’d have to go with the NEIPA. Anyone who’s spent a day off chasing the Alchemist delivery truck around Vermont knows that there’s something special about that style of beer. When done right, the entirety of the beer has a better balance and it’s easier to drink.
2 – Are born on dates on a can important to you and why?
I think born on dates are important mainly for accountability purposes. There’s always gonna be the aspect of “drinking fresh” which is important, but I think everyone has their own window of drinkability. It also protects the breweries. It prevents your local package store and distributor from putting out old stock and sticking you with [the] out-of-date product.
3 – Favorite brewery or beer from Michigan?
Odd Side Ales for sure. I had a trading partner who used to get me weird beers from them before weird beers were trendy. The first time he sent me a Hipster Brunch Stout I was like, “Who’s idea was it to put bacon into a beer & how can I give this man a hug?” From their Hazel’s Nuts to their Mayan Mocha they have always pushed the limits with their adjuncts.
(editor note: you totally had me at bacon and now I need to get a can)
4 – Best gateway beer to introduce to your non-beer drinking friend and why?
The first beer that comes to mind is Founder’s All Day IPA. The beer is a session beer with low ABV & even though it falls in the IPA category, the citrus flavors make the beer very approachable to non-beer drinkers. It’s a summertime crusher!
5 – Ever have Sam Adams Utopias? If yes, what did you think?
Yes, a few times now. I don’t think I appreciated it for what it was until I started drinking more BA beers & Barleywines #BiL. It’s boozy for someone who isn’t used to those intense barrel flavors. I do think it rides the line of being called beer anyways. It begins as a beer but evolves into something completely different. It’s an unmatched drinking experience that lives up to the hype, but not the price.
6 – Most memorable beer or brewery moment?
I spent the 3 weeks prior to my wedding a few years ago trekking around the Northeast, gathering beers for the reception. I had Alchemist, Bissell Brothers, and Tree House cans available for our friends and family. We had an amazing wedding & celebrated with all of the most important people in our life drinking fantastic beer. The best beers are always the ones we share together.
7 – Tell us about the most odd but interesting tasting beer you ever had?
2019 Extreme Beer Fest in Boston. We head over to the Dewey Beer Company booth to discover Nashville Hot Fried Chicken and Waffle Stout. First sip, my buddy says, “Holy Sh*t, that’s hot chicken and waffles!!” It hit all the flavors you’d expect. Not sure if it should ever be made again but it was tasty.
Look for these future responses from the following for SQBS soon…
Part 58 – Could be you!
If you want to be featured, send me a DM or reach out to me via email at [email protected]. Feel free to comment at the very bottom if you want to see more!
Thanks for reading and have a great day!