We were two strangers who bought houses across the street from one another; however, after a few conversations we realized that we had two things in common: our passion for not only drinking good beer but brewing it as well.
From that point on we brewed beer obsessively and drank it responsibly (but of course). We joined a home brew club and continued to brew and learn as much as we could. We began to visit local, regional and national breweries together. We asked tons of annoyingly nerdy questions and took as many notes as possible.
Pretty soon our entire basements and our lives were filled with something relating to brewing beer. We started hosting parties because we were making too much beer for the two us to consume. We typically had about 35 gallons of beer on tap between our two homes at any given time. We enjoyed brewing as well as the company. It was fun.
Our wives might tell a slightly different story. The bottom line is that the notion of having carboys, hydrometers, buckets, grain, mini-fridges full of yeast, etc. was not how they envisioned decorating the basement. Having friends over drinking beer and loudly chatting into the wee hours of the morning also didn’t suit them. They saw how passionate we were and they gave us an ultimatum. Essentially, we needed to open up a microbrewery or simply shut up. We chose the former.