Episode 4 - The Quarantine Sessions with LJ Whirley of Newfields


  • Segment 1: Drinking more purposefully

    What is drinking with purpose and how can we all learn and participate? Hear about some great resources like “The Brewmaster’s Table” by Garrett Oliver.
  • Segment 2: Experiencing a culture through beer

    Listen in as LJ recounts some of her favorite beer trips, learning to build a draft system, and the importance of mental and physical health.
  • Segment 3: Becoming a good stay at home leader

    What does it take to thrive as a team during quarantine? In this segment, you’ll hear advice on how to inspire others to continue to get better and how to find the positivity in all things.
  • Final Segment: Brewing beer is hard no matter who you are
    What’s up with the Pink Boot’s Society? Ant and LJ talk about how powerful women are and how great it can be when we choose to help our fellow human.


LJ Whirley 0:00
You have way cooler background than me. And I’m really upset about it.

I’m not surprised like, this is what I expect from you.

Ant Blair 0:10
As you should. Yours is yours is appropriate for the time.

LJ Whirley 0:15
I know right this so I am like right for all this went down in the beginning of August the end of February, my lease end and I moved in with my two friends, Megan and Brian. Brian works at Sun King Megan works at Fountain Square Brewing Company, and they have a three year old reads. So I was in between leases. My sister and I are going to get a place in the fall. So we’re like, oh, yeah, this you know, I’m at work a lot. I’m never going to be around. And now we’re all here all the time. It’s like my new little fam.

Ant Blair 0:46
Great, but what Brian’s got a kegerator so Oh, that’s that’s terrible.

LJ Whirley 0:52
I know. So it doesn’t suck. There’s lots of beer. We have three beer fridges because we’re beer people. So on a separate Tango and what Lupron that’s their newest IPA. It’s Sun King. Oh, man. It’s good. It is like, yeah, it’s one of my favorites right now. Yeah, go grab some cans of that, but we haven’t on draft. So that’s fun. So I mean of all times to be quarantined. I randomly got quarantine with two of my friends and a cute three year old and like, shit ton of beer. So, oh, there’s worse ways to ride out a pandemic. I know. So I’m not doing too bad. And you’re in Flint.

Ant Blair 1:31
I am in I am literally in the belly of the beast. I got out of Indiana before the stay at home order because I mean, my people are up here. So I’m Yeah, I am. And right now I’m in Lincoln Park, which is in Wayne County. And if you look at the Michigan statistics, Wayne County is high in Detroit. Hi. Yeah, there’s they’re saying that about nd too but yes, when I was going there

LJ Whirley 2:00
So, are you what are the beer? What are the breweries doing there? Do they do carry out? Or is it kind of nothing? Like no carry out?

Yeah, same carry out. Yeah, carry out. I don’t know that people are being as innovative as an indie and in Indianapolis and surrounding areas with delivery and that whole thing but most folks have no curbside, you know, grand type stuff.

It’s weird because there’s no, there’s no consistent rule. It’s just you know, there’s carry out only but different places are doing different practices. So some places are doing only order online, you can’t, you know, touch a pen to sign your receipt when you get in there. You can’t come in at all in other places, you can still go in if you want, or you can do curbside or you can get delivered, there’s minimum. So it’s not confusing. It’s just it. It feels like there should be like everybody should band together and come up with you know, a policy. And the safest for everybody. But I mean, some places are doing Growler fills some places aren’t doing Growler fills. I don’t think you should be refilling use growlers right now, but

Ant Blair 3:11
I’m telling you I’m not gonna lie I’m fucked up right now just because of people. I hate to even say it but Americans being Americans

LJ Whirley 3:25
We’re so inconvenienced. I know damn Coronavirus my shit. Well, yeah, I mean, I’m annoyed. I mean, I’m very extroverted. And this has been pretty hard not being around my people, but I’d rather just get it over with.

Ant Blair 3:44
Exactly so we can go on and over with.

LJ Whirley 3:48
Yeah, I don’t. I don’t really feel like the government has support like has set it up so that people can successfully do this carry out situation with facing this ethical social and it’s like this bad like there’s there’s two groups. There’s some people who are like, Oh my god, you went to go buy beer, are you serious? And then other people you know I’m in the industry so I’m a beer person. These are my partners. These are people that my success relies on theirs. And so it’s like do I do I leave my beer people hanging like they’re allowed to sell carry out the government said you can sell carry out. But is it responsible to leave your house to go buy a beer where you’re going to maybe touch a door? touch a pin? I don’t know. So it’s, I feel like based on what I’ve seen on social media, a lot of my friends are divided. A lot of people I know are divided. They don’t. It’s like don’t go anywhere. But hey, breweries are allowed to be open, so go support them.

Where do you fall on that side of the fence? Are you in the middle still or?

Yeah. I only have left to go to the grocery or to get beer.

Ant Blair 5:04
Yeah, it’s hard.

LJ Whirley 5:07
I’ve gone once a week to get beer. So I’ve ordered. I’ve done the order online and go and pick up. And then yesterday we rode our bikes down the Sun King didn’t touch it, don’t worry, I went in you order they give it to you.

Ant Blair 5:23
It seems safe, but also, you just you know, you never know.

LJ Whirley 5:28
It’s hard. It’s hard because of such a beer person like these are these are people that normally I’d be buying a lot of beer from right now to sell in the beer garden. And I can’t buy anything, I can only support them on a personal level and, you know, tip the staff and hope that that gets them by if other people do that a couple more weeks, but man, it’s a shitty situation. It really is. I’m doing my best to find positivity and good in it all and one of the things that’s been encouraging in my conversations with folks like you and being in the industry Is the how people in the industry are, even though they’re there’s no consistent Hey, this is how we should do things. There is some consistency in. We’re supporting one another. Yeah. Where we’re at least doing that part of it. Well, yeah. Some breweries who some breweries are just they’re just trying to get by. Yeah. Some breweries that are they’re doing okay. But they’re taking a hit in there. And those breweries are doing things where they’re trying to do something for the community. Yeah, about the community in different ways. And in addition to generating sales, of course, but there’s breweries that are smaller that maybe aren’t in a cash position right now, to where they’re just struggling to keep the doors open, where there’s other ones who are doing struggling to keep the doors open, but they do have enough money to be a country right? You know the ways?

Yeah, I think a lot of factors come into play. It’s like, how like a bigger brewery like Sun King. I’m like, Oh, you know, you think oh, Sun King will be fine, but they just open to new locations. I mean, I’m sure their payroll is huge. And they’re probably I mean, they just opened these places and they haven’t turned a profit yet. So how, you know, how did those breweries get by on just distribution and pickup because, you know, and then smaller brewery so like Megan, my friend I live with she works at Fountain Square, you know, they seem to be doing all right. Like they’re, you know, they’ve been open for a while. They’re in grocery stores. And it’s a small staff. So I think small breweries like that that are smaller that are have an open longer, they don’t have a lot of debt. But what about some of these newer breweries and they’ve been open a year or two, they’re still in the red, and they rely on that nice retail margin. It’s not it’s not the same going and buying a Growler beer for 10 bucks versus, you know, a $6 pint. They’re making that nice margin on so

That is a thing we have a brewery. I don’t know if you know we in Columbus, a brand new brewery. I don’t know that they’ve been open for months.

What’s it called? hog Molly? I have heard of hog Molly. Okay.

Yeah, their beer their beer is a solid, solid beer. Nothing to blow your mind. nothing terrible is right in the middle only been open for four months and it’s like wow,

what happened you know they got through the winter like this is busy time. This is usually you know, beer garden will be popping off right now. You’d be so busy, like I was worried. Rewind a month and a half ago. I was like, how am I going to staff the beer garden. Like I had any of these all these projects running and I was worried about having enough staff on and there were right there. At the end there were about four people and just hired they had gone to orientation had even work a shift yet I just hired for beer garden that immediately We’re not employed. But I was able I had a I was able to keep about 70% of my staff right now. So new fields announced on Friday we’re gonna they’re keeping everybody on the payroll through through June. So Wow. So feel really grateful right now that still employed probably one of the luckier times to work for a nonprofit feel very fortunate that they care about keeping us on right now and like even my even my part time staff so I’m going to put together this week some work from home training for them and try to try to keep keep being a leader from home it’s hard

for you Lj I expected nothing less well.

I think if I was in denial, and I finally accepted this, so you know, where are we in that this is a third week of quarantine are we gone for three weeks so I think I have faced the excellent This phase of this is what we’re doing for a minute. So yeah, I feel that yes, it’s kind of getting in some routines, rode my bike today rode a bike. It’s not my bike, but I rode a bike.

Ant Blair 10:13
Like, as long as you ride.

LJ Whirley 10:16
it worked out a few times, I’m like, Who am I, but probably drinking more than usual too. So

I know and that’s the thing. Lj don’t don’t. One of the first videos that I put on my YouTube channel was Hey, this is shitty right now. Understand you need beer liquor wine highway when you get down. But don’t use it as a crutch. Just take the edge off, because it’ll be super easy to get sucked up into this with all the death and despair and everything that’s going on and be easy to go back row. Don’t Don’t be that guy. That girl.

Yeah, I’m trying to use it to my approach. My positive approach is to drink more purposefully. So less One beers back because I like it. It’s nice out and more thoughtful. Get to know your beer a little bit better situation.

Ant Blair 11:09
Yeah, you don’t have one now. I do have one

LJ Whirley 11:12
but if I were gonna I always wait because we’re going to pour a beer right so we can get a get a nice head on that

you already know. I like the glassware.

I got my fancy stem tulip. There’s my favorite got to this.

I know you got some funky

nothing funky right now. So um, right before all this one down the group. I’m in pink boots, which is women professionals and beer. I think you’ve heard of that we talked about before we don’t talk about this week. So we did three collaboration beers right before this all happened. And of course now they’re only available for the shutdown. So Goodman House did one that hazy IPA was fantastic. I had a couple growlers of that pretty sure it’s gone. And Indiana. One

whats the name of that one.

It was the Guggman Hause one. I don’t know what it was actually called because it was just the collaboration beer we did as well but give me the pink boots. We’re I don’t even I don’t know, I don’t even know we named it. But so Guggman Hause is one of my new favorite breweries here too. Have you had anything from them?

Ant Blair 12:14
I have not.

LJ Whirley 12:15
Eric is a fantastic Brewer and they’re brewing on such a small system. It is crazy how consistent he is with this beer but it’s great

what are the styles that… What are their their… I guess their house beers or their core beers? What What are those?

So they lived in Germany for a year or so. And yeah, so they love drinking like heavies and all that stuff. They came back so they took a little bit of that German beer community like they want to be a German brewery here because it’s just you can’t replicate that but they did. They saw their favorite styles. So they have a hefeweizen that is probably their number one seller, but they also love IPA. So he does, like I said, I think it’s a two barrel system. So the beers always really fresh and they go through a lot of different IPAs at new fields they were going to have on their milk jug or the winners when our circle milk jug, some milk stout, a really nice, clean light body for for milk stout. So that was really good. And well they have a Pilsner in either the Pilsner is like German American collab it’s either I think they you’re using European hops they’ll use in pills mall and then American hops them but it does. It does have that nice, crisp bitter German pills tastes good. Nice. Yeah. So anyways, they did our first collaboration brew. And the Indiana city is the first brewery in Indiana to can the pink boots collab. So this hot pink can which is freakin awesome. Got our little pink boots logo on it, and they’re all IPAs because the fundraiser Yakima hops donates a lot of the money from the hot sensation. So this is fine. This is a session IPA. And I think it was about six of us went there and brewed with Ryan. He let us do a lot of it. It was really fun. Oh, yeah, I got a little I was good. Well, let’s oh hey


Yeah, I got I got a little wild there. Oh, there we go. Yeah, we’re just gonna

Ant Blair 14:17
Yeah, that’s

LJ Whirley 14:18
probably a little too much ever. It’s fine. It’s all good. It’s never

enough head that I can fuck with that.

Everybody should be Yeah, so that’s fun. That’s why I like those glasses to that come in real tight because you just get a little wonky head on there. So yes, this is fun because it’s so you know like it’s nice little session. I could probably drink the whole four pack and be like, feeling feeling alright, nothing too crazy. I think it’s four and a half percent ABV. Yeah, but uh it’s got Laurel is aka Idaho, Jim and Eldorado hops in the blend, like much of West Coast hops. So it’s nice.

Ant Blair 14:59
Did you Get in on at a virtual happy hour or virtual cheers that the Indy beer folk did.

LJ Whirley 15:08
I don’t know if I think I understood it properly. But we just Megan and I took a picture of us drinking our local beer together and posted it so we weren’t live on.

Oh, right. Yeah, I understood that part. I know that Indiana Brewers Association, they did like a virtual show. Other places, other breweries that are doing like virtual happy hours.

Yeah, that’s been fun. I’ve been doing a lot of one on ones I haven’t done a bunch of group ones. I did one with my my work team. But I’ve been trying to do some networking without a state peeps. So there’s one guy that works for Russia River Brewing Co I, Allah we we’ve been having some virtual beers and talking about differences in what’s going on here and there. There is an advanced Cicerone, Nat Natalie the full name, she has my beers with Nat she is England. So she’s been doing a lot of cool lives. He’s been trying to follow her. And Pat Fahy, Master Cicerone, every Wednesday on if you’ve seen that he’s been doing a different style valuation. It’s really fun. He’ll pour a beer, talk about the beer and then open it up to live questions. So I would check that out. It’s pretty fun. I think they’re doing doubles or double box. They’re doing something nice Belgian beers tomorrow. So that’ll be fun.

Send me send me the links to those I’ll put those in the comments in this and I will also give them a look as well because I wasn’t hip to that.

It’s funny. I watched I’ve watched it live both times but uh, he they posted it afterward too. But yes, this arounds been trying to keep people engaged right now. A lot of people are studying so nice. I’ve been trying to study a little bit. I’ve been working on reading about food pairings. I’ve been reading brewmasters table by Gary Oliver. Which I’m the guy. That’s that’s your boy. He I mean like that guy. He is such an inspiration. I didn’t know how Cool he was until when my friends pointed out they’re like, you know, that guy’s like, the most badass African American and beer like one of like the most value here. And I’m like, so I started looking into him like, holy shit. This guy’s I mean, that book is what they test you on for food pairings for advanced Cicerone. Like he pretty much wrote the standard. So

that’s the Oxford Companion to beer.

Yeah, no. Yeah, no kidding. So that guy, I also didn’t know how influential, influential he’s been to. To beer. So get into that right now. That guy’s awesome. Hell yeah.

He’s obviously for me an inspiration because he is badass. And he’s, he’s a brother. And I’m like, man, hell yeah. That’s something to that’s something to aspire to, in my own way.

Yeah. It’s really cool. And he the way that he writes and talks about beer is so approachable and just, it feels Like, usually you feel like you’ve known him forever. Like the style he writes is so like, though the situations that he describes with the food pairings. Now every once in a while he’s like, you know, I had some seared like, some duck breasts and you know, lamb chops. You’re like, Alright, let me grab the lamb chops. They’ve been keeping my fridge out, but uh, yeah, he, he, he breaks it down pretty nicely. So if you haven’t read the brewmasters table, highly recommend.

I do have that in my Kindle. I haven’t busted that out yet. I have some other books that’s on that on my Kindle that I’m reading through. It is in my queue. Right. It’s a i, one of the very first beer books that I bought was that book.

Yeah, it was it was gifted to me by one of my mentors during my Cicerone studying so I have not read all the way through. So trying to focus on food pairings and brewing process are probably my two weakest areas. So Trying to get brushed up a bit.

Ant Blair 19:03
Well, it was funny that you pulled out an Indiana city beer because I got the Citizens Right barley wine. Three cans in my fridge right now girl.

LJ Whirley 19:14
Oh, there you are those open?

That’s bad that’s what I was planning on drinking unless I opened up this one.

damn well this isn’t good listen Wait a second you got what do you drink? Wait What was that when you to… show me from urban chestnut this wicked the Bavarian lager? Oh, that’s good. No, we’re gonna drink more than one beer right?

Well, that’s why I had to okay. That’s why I had to.

Well, you you drink whatever you want. Um, I guess I’m not I’m not gonna waste this guy’s so good.

Ant Blair 19:48
Well, I was just trying to keep it Indiana. Cuz you popped open Indiana. beer so I’ll keep it in Indiana. All right. I can have any drink that says right.

LJ Whirley 19:59
That might be the Beer you need for a minute.

Girl. You know how I get down? This? Let me what’s the ABV on this? Probably like


Ant Blair 20:10
Right? Hmm. Unless they dont put the ABV on their beers. Oh, I can’t see I ain’t got my specs on but it looks like it’s somewhere approaching looks like it’s eight or nine. Wait a minute. No, it’s 11. There is right there is 11. Yeah, it might you know, I’m trying to start off at 11

LJ Whirley 20:30
I mean only, I mean, if that’s where you’re starting, it could only Well,

Ant Blair 20:34
well before before I talked to you, I’ve talked to Xavier at Terre Haute Brewing Company.

LJ Whirley 20:40
Yeah. Are they? Is that the one that was just trying to open like they had just open?

No, they didn’t just open them the oldest second oldest brewery not running but second oldest brewery in the United States in Terre Haute

damn, how

Ant Blair 20:58
you got that podcast when we drive So

LJ Whirley 21:00
I will shoot in there.

I started out with this.

Let me see. Oh, nice. You know, I’m not really that familiar with their stuff I I told you before I’m pretty bad about my little indie bubble. So spoil we have so much good beer, you know, within a 510 minute drive, I could probably hit up 10 breweries. So I tried to do that if your first they know how that goes, I start. I’m really I go to beer festivals like Alright, get your networking game on, go meet new people and then you know, see your friends. You’re like, hey, and then you’re just hanging out with them. Open up. I’ll go with the unfiltered unpasteurized Bavarian lager.

Ant Blair 21:42
I love that and if you want to break open the citizens right after you’re done with that, then we can get down. Yeah, I don’t think that’d be horrible. Well, cheers, girl. My girl. Well, then you already know I’m hard pourin.

LJ Whirley 21:56
What do you see you got? You got you’re drinking all the same glass man.

Ant Blair 22:00
Yours is a little bit more teku. a little bit more rubenesque

LJ Whirley 22:06
Oh, I don’t know. This is pretty round.

Maybe it is. I thought it was more angled. No, it is more angle. So I think we are drinking out of similar glasses.

Know what yours is right and yours does have more of a. It comes in more.

It’s rubenesque

Ant Blair 22:23

Clank clank. So Lj I went to St. Louis. I want to circle back to a couple things that you talked about. I went to St. Louis for my birthday. Yeah, that was my birthday gift to myself. I’m going to St. Louis. And I’m hanging out with one of my homeboys. He’s gonna show me around the beer scene down there. It upside project and all the different breweries and I took the N bet the Anheuser Busch tour as well.

LJ Whirley 22:50
It’s probably impressive,

Ant Blair 22:52
Girl, super impressive and know some which what I enjoyed everything about the tool. They give you a free beer at the end. Mm hmm. In a bottle to take with. It’s probably delicious. Budweiser straight off the tee is. There’s a whole different experience. Yeah, a whole different experience. I was not mad about drinking Budweiser fresh like that.

LJ Whirley 23:20
I would definitely do that. I need to get to St. Louis. I don’t know. I don’t know too many people there but the beer seems pretty fun.

Ant Blair 23:28
When you make that happen holla at you, man. I will we we can do that together.

LJ Whirley 23:34
You know, we got to do the Michigan trip up my Michigan trip tour guide. I have not. It’s like I’ve been to Belgium but haven’t been to Michigan. You know, it’s like what is wrong with you.

Ant Blair 23:47
You went the right way first,

LJ Whirley 23:49
I guess yeah. But that’s what I did. Uh, so I you know, I try to channel my inner Lj Bourdain. vibes and go experience Learn about a culture through through beer. So, I recently so I went, I tell you, I went to my chromatics draft course up in Northern Illinois. No.

Yes. to that.

Yeah, we’re building our new beer garden either this fall. I mean, who knows now with everything going on or next spring, but we’re going to switch over to all draft because it’s sustainable. And if it’s done, right, there’s nothing better in the world than a perfectly poured draft beer. So new fields sent me up there, and I got to learn how to build systems and all that kind of how to maintain so really cool, but I went up to Madison, Wisconsin. Yes, yeah. So I went to workman’s draft and went to occupy who also does untitled art. I went up there one night and then went through Chicago and did like lagunitas off color and Goose Island. I thought what off color? Yeah. So off color was, I mean, I think I spent $200 on carry out beer there. I think. I mean, I think the guy was like genuinely annoyed with me. I was like, I pretty much wanted everything. No, because it’s so good. There was one old school one a collaboration they had done was still water was still water, but Central State they had done a collaboration sour with four breweries and Central State was one and my friend Jesse he used to work there texted me because he saw where I was

Central state isn’t doing anymore. Correct? Where he stated they’re not brewing anymore, right?

No, the head Brewer Josh works for Daredevil now.


yeah. So I don’t Well, I mean, I don’t know if they’re brewing or not. So I don’t

Ant Blair 25:41
I don’t think they are I haven’t seen any new stuff from them in a while.

Mm hmm. But still like The The Koelschip. I love that space. They still got beer in there.

They do what you were saying that they did the collab with Central State. That’s why I was thinking

LJ Whirley 25:58
that was cool, too. be over in Chicago and get a central state club beer. And then last year I had gone to Nashville, Tennessee, which you know, obviously not really known for beer, but I went to about 10 breweries there. Obviously Yazoo super fun that was that was a good one. Black Abbey

Ant Blair 26:18
And did you hit up a really popular one that has all the crazy stuff? Yeah, uh, either Southern gris. Did you hit?

LJ Whirley 26:27
That was the last place I went really cool.

Ant Blair 26:29
I’m trying to think of a god bless america that homestyle is there. Like flagship beer. Oh, bearded

LJ Whirley 26:38
bearded Iris. I we both Yeah, beard was cool. So happy hours are still a thing in Nashville. So I was. I was like, looking good. There’s half like this is allowed. So there was like $4 pints a lot of places. And some places I swear by myself. I mean, I was there. My cousin visiting him but a couple nights he was at work. I’m like, I’m just going to go see how many breweries I can go to and get beer. From So, yeah, the culture there was cool. I love your beanie by the way. That’s great.

I gotta represent Flint. They still got bad water.


Ant Blair 27:12
and they have Coronavirus.

LJ Whirley 27:15
Yeah. So yeah, it’s Michigan. So Michigan’s up there on the amount of people testing positive.

Ant Blair 27:23
Ah, only behind I want to say New Jersey. We’re like number three.

LJ Whirley 27:29
Really? Yeah. So I know Indy I think indies like 14th or Indiana’s 14th or something. Most cases being Indy. Probably is the airport

I made Yeah, no doubt. No doubt. No doubt in Detroit. I didn’t think about, you know, the Detroit Wayne area. I mean, I could look over the river and see Canada so you have that traffic too. Right.

Right by the border

Ant Blair 27:56
right by the border, plus you have Detroit Metro airport, and Yeah, it’s I think Michigan’s third behind Louisiana i think is New York, Amelie, Louisiana. And

LJ Whirley 28:11
what’s going on in Louisiana, just

Ant Blair 28:14
the same thing that’s happening everywhere people just ain’t supposed to do. So they’d say, Mardi Gras. So when they had Mardi Gras,

LJ Whirley 28:23
Oh, of course.

Ant Blair 28:25
Yeah, I guess and you know, a lot of people are saying,

LJ Whirley 28:28
There’s probably tons of people who had it, and they just thought they were sick before this all happened. I mean, they were sick, obviously. But who knows?

Yeah, the thing is, so yeah, Michigan, Michigan is definitely up there. Detroit is a hot zone. And you know, I’m here. I’m here, my son right now. We’d like converted the basement and the whole thing, because like I said, I’m not gonna I’m not gonna be. I’m not gonna I’m not gonna let him ride through this by himself. Yeah. So up here. You know, if anything happens to them, you know, I want to be close by, you know, their, their, their their risk, because they’re just up in age. Right. And I heard this morning on BBC, of course, African American people are more susceptible and the underlying causes and the whole thing about that I’m like, Oh, of course. Right. And they tried to tie that to underlying conditions and socio economic status and all that other bullshit. Oh, God, the mud but but the moral of the story is, according to the numbers that African American folks are getting hit harder, and you have a city like Detroit, prime it primarily African American, so you get all of those factors into play.

Yeah, think about community like a lot of people live with a lot of people. You know, it’s not like a Pete in especially This time of year you know, you’re having you’re having a barbecue or you’re hanging off all your friends and it’s just a lot of I think it could be related to different cultures who gather more, or they have bigger celebrations. I don’t know people have bigger families. My, my sister went home to be with my family, they have a home gym, my sister’s a personal trainer, and all the gyms are closed. So I tried to get her to stay with us here so she could have you know, some some socialization to be quarantined with us so that she chose she chose a workout over that. I was like you’re gonna choose your physical health over your mental health. She goes it’s she is it’s both my physical health is my mental health. But uh, my uncle owns some liquor stores there so I think she’s doing all right.

Ant Blair 30:49
Yeah, good for her on the fitness because my Planet Fitness I was going to Planet Fitness. So obviously that’s not a thing right now.

LJ Whirley 30:57
No, you can’t. You have to learn how to do a workout elsewhere. You she give me a virtual workout every other day.

Ant Blair 31:03
what was the last workout you did.

LJ Whirley 31:05
Yesterday she does like these uh, she’ll give me sets and stuff like some squats and some lunges and push ups and sit ups and stuff. So after I thought I had the Coronavirus afterward because I couldn’t breathe. I felt like I was dying shortness of breath. I think I think she gave me Coronavirus after haha. I didn’t I ended up recovering. Yeah, I could barely get out of bed The next day, but, um, I made bagels. So I learned how to make bagels on my friends that zoom like Live podcast on how to make bagels. So that’s cool. Yeah, it’s, like I said, this is the acceptance phase of this is how at least the next six weeks is going to be I mean, at least at least six weeks. And so you gotta gotta try get to a routine. So go crazy.

Ant Blair 31:58
Well, let me let me ask you a couple questions. And even related to that you mentioned before you’re starting to come to grips with being a stay at home leader, so to speak, and newfields being newfields are like Yo, we gon make sure y’all looked out for until I think you said June. How is it

LJ Whirley 32:20
30th I think is guaranteed paid.

Ant Blair 32:23
Good and good for newfields that they can do that. I think they should do that. But here you are. You have a staff of how many?

LJ Whirley 32:33
Um, right now it’s because I had to cut it down. And I think about 10 or 12 only right now.

Well, you say 10 or 12? Only. That’s almost 20. So how has that been for you to you know, keep the troops inspired, so to speak, and to be able to say, Hey, you know, we need to get this done and get that done and this and that. How has that how is the experience So far leading from quote unquote a far a team of people in different places. Yeah, still get things done that need to get done.

Um, you know, like, like I said, I I don’t think I’ve been very good at it this. I’m hoping to get better this week, because we had spent so much time doing all the training. So we know last time we talked, I told you kind of how we train, we go meet the brute like we go meet the Brewers. So we were we were on our high we had just, we had just gone to metazoa again, we had gone to Triton. Also we go we mean we were just we were in our zone. We were learning about Linda Goodman house, and we had been learning about the beers we were going to have specifically so last year, we learned about all the beers this year we we had our menu done, and we were specifically talking about beer styles. So I think I was a little depressed. Initially like I didn’t know what to say to anybody. Like I was just what was me everything sucks. I can’t open the beer garden right now. You know, and I talk, you know, talk to Josh a little bit too, because, yeah, he’s been he’s been great during this, you know, for support. So, you know, I think he was probably a little depressed too. This is something that we, our team works really hard. And I think one of our biggest strengths is the corner spot. My new field is we are there. And I lead and that’s my leadership style is to lead by example, like I like being in it with those guys. I like it slams, I like running beers and you know, picking up trash off the floor and talking to guests, and Josh will do the same thing. So I think our department thrives as a little team like that. So this has been hard and I on Friday, so Friday is when we finally found out what was happening with employment. I didn’t know if they were going to let everybody go. Like I didn’t even know that my part time staff was going to stay employed. So I had been pretty distant. I’ve been talking to my assistant manager Marty. He had been talking Mm, our sous chef Emma, and, uh, once we got that news on Friday, I emailed everybody and I was like, Hey, I know I haven’t really been there because I honestly didn’t know what to say to you guys didn’t know what was going on. And we still don’t know what’s going on boy I do know is that we’re all going to get paid through June 30. So it’s time like let’s let’s get back into gear, and I’m gonna get my head in the game. I’m trying to get better for them too. So I’m trying not to get relaxed on my studies. If I keep studying if I get better for them, and for myself, then they’ll get better too. So I think I’m going to start with the basics and start back with the brewing process and you know, not know maybe not with like how barley is grown and stuff like that, but maybe put together a structured weekly study situation for everybody. Maybe some fun videos of me drinking on the patio that will make them laugh. I don’t know. I don’t I don’t think I can say that. I’m a good lead leader from home right now, but I’m going to try to work towards it over the next couple of months.

And you know what Lj, that in and of itself makes you a good leader. Because a, you’re transparent B, you’re like, Hey, you know, this is where I failed. See, this is where I can get better, and D, I am determined to get better. Those are hallmarks of a good leader. And it’s times like this where the people who are going to be leaders who are people who are going to be leaders or people who are leaders get fired tested. Yeah, and on the other side of this, you’ll be you’ll be like, Oh, you’re stronger. You know what I mean? And that’s, that’s that’s what I was talking about earlier. Lj when I was talking about finding the good and the positive in all of this, this sucks. I mean, nobody gonna say is great. Anybody who Does I’m gonna kick them in the teeth, right? There is some good things that can come from this. And I think if people focus on that, what can I do to become a better person or make the world better or grow? I mean, you’re sitting, people are sitting at home watching Netflix and playing fucking Candy Crush and shit. What are you doing to make yourself a better human being right now you’ll have shit to do. What are you doing to improve yourself? What are you doing to improve the lives of others around you? What are you doing to improve the world? Now’s the time with those people rise to the top. True leaders rise to the top. It’s bad right now, but a lot of good can come from this too.

Yeah, I mean, I agree. I, I’m usually the person who I guess the ops manager. I miss a lot of meetings or I’m bad responding to emails or text because I am like on the go, and I’m used to working that way. So Learning how to use all these online like zoom. I’ve never used zoom before Microsoft Teams and things like that. When someone sends me an email I don’t really have a good excuse not to immediately respond because doing anything but yeah to your point I really tried not to fall into playing games on my phone. Extreme bingeing Netflix like yeah, there’s a couple shows that I wouldn’t. I watched True Detective last week, which was awesome. never watched Tiger King. Oh, yeah, I watched Tiger King.

Ant Blair 38:33
You didn’t do it?

LJ Whirley 38:34
I had to to do it. I’ll send you some good gifs after this some good memes. It’s like I don’t know that. I mean, we did that like one that was like in the beginning. I did watch that like the second day of quarantine.

Yeah, right. You went through the whole seven hours.

We did it. Yeah. It took a couple of days. I think you did. Did you do it? You watch

Ant Blair 38:54
I did not. I did not I resisted.

LJ Whirley 38:57
I mean, I don’t know. felt like it was going to be it was more annoying not to know what everybody was talking about. So

Ant Blair 39:05
that’s fair.

LJ Whirley 39:07
It was like there was one meme. It was like, See, this is why I don’t plan ahead because if you would have asked me in January what I’d be doing right now, it wouldn’t be sitting at home watching a documentary about a redneck Tiger owner, Oklahoma, wherever he’s from Florida, Oklahoma, wherever.

Ant Blair 39:24
So, Lj so tell me tell me about the whole thing. I have not watched it. I saw a trailer. Me and my son are sitting there saying we’re looking at each other saying, should we do it? Because if we do, we’re going all in right now. He decided no, no. is the one thing that stands out to you the most out of watching that show what stood out.

LJ Whirley 39:51
I mean, I just can’t believe those people are real like, stuff that happens is just Nuts like how? How like, also like, how is this allowed? Like how? How are people allowed to go buy a tiger? Also on my bike ride? One of the people that lives here in Fountain Square owns an emu. There is an emu. And its name is nibbles. And it lives. Yeah, I call it so me like because I see this email on a regular basis now. I think it’s a she she’s Yeah, so I I’ve determined it’s the lady and I call her nibs. It’s all like riding up on the bike like a gal noobs. And she’ll, she’ll like, go like this and she’s like, Come No, it’s a wingless bird. Like Neil comes over there to the arms or anything, you know? I don’t know. So apparently you can by email. So I guess I was just shocked. First off that these people exist and are not this is not fictional. And second, that you can just go purchase a tiger, like how easy it is to go buy. Like a dangerous animal.

How much do Tigers run for on the open market?

I saw somewhere that’s like, I don’t know, 1500 bucks for a baby Tiger or something like that. Oh, you get that with your tax return.

Ant Blair 41:07
You’re done with your check.

LJ Whirley 41:11
I’m like, I was looking at baby emu like I need an emu egg. I’d have to hatch it myself for like 200 bucks. I don’t know.

I can’t imagine you sitting on an egg for an extended period of time.

Yeah, I mean, I’m not a very patient person. So I might have to buy a pre hatched emu egg. I would. I would pay extra to get a like a one month old. They’re just so cute. I don’t know. I’m not really going to get one because one day we won’t be in quarantine and I won’t be able to give it enough love and affection. I’ll be busy.

Ant Blair 41:43
So give some beer. That’s true. Yeah. Hey, Lj Did you see that Anheuser Busch hired their first female brewmaster and she’s African American.

LJ Whirley 41:56
Really? I did not see that. Send me an article. I will Yeah, what

Ant Blair 42:01
what do you think about that? That some a company that big? How do they not already have women?

LJ Whirley 42:07
That’s what I’m saying?

Ant Blair 42:09
Like how is that?

LJ Whirley 42:12
I don’t know, it’s, I get torn because I, whenever, you know, I get worked up about the lack of women in the industry, but I mean, I’ve been part of some brew days. It’s his hard work, like brewing a beer is physically demanding and it takes patience and it takes you to follow like you’re following a recipe essentially, you’re cooking something so I don’t know. I think it’s crazy that Anheuser Busch did not already have women brewing, but I think there’s a lot of women brewers out there that just aren’t as like they don’t care. Like they’re not coming out and be like, I’m a female Brewer. Look at me. You know, I don’t think maybe they’re just more modest but yeah, weird. That’s awesome though.

Ant Blair 42:59
It is Awesome, but it is weird to that point. Xavier, who I talked to who is a certified Cicerone, by the way I should connect you I think you guys would dig it.

LJ Whirley 43:09
I’ve seen he’s been certified for a while. I think right he’s I’ve seen him on the website.

I want to say maybe a year

or two, I creep every so often I creep to see if we have any new peeps. but uh, yeah, I think we’re lingering around like 42 Yeah,

Ant Blair 43:29
X is a good dude. I mean good for you to to connect We talked about Keeley Tomlinson because Danny Boy,

LJ Whirley 43:43

Ant Blair 43:45
there is no way you haven’t bumped into Kaylee.

LJ Whirley 43:49
I don’t know.

Ant Blair 43:51
Really? red hair? short? No? Keely, she’s a female and she works and she’s the head. She’s a head Brewer at Danny Boy over in Korea. And in Xavier The reason why I even said that was exactly what he was talking about when he studied he said he, he did it three months. went at it, and you can do it that way. He I think he said he grabbed he went

LJ Whirley 44:23
he got an 89 Huh, that’s good. That’s better than I did.

Oh, right. Oh, yeah. He got 89 and he said that Keeley was a very key part of his success on that test. Because he went to Danny Boy, you know, he you know, clean tanks. You know, did all the grunt work valuable? Yeah, but got the Intel from Keeley. So when he went and took his test, he was able to get 89%

Oh, yeah, that’s pretty good. Um, yeah. So I definitely, there’s no way you could I don’t think you could pass it. I mean, if you spend a lot of time by yourself but yeah, like breweries letting me go in there and actually see what those things look like on a large scale like What does watering actually look like what is mashing and actually look like? The you know the all flavors What does DMS actually smell like? What is he too and actually tastes like you just can’t it’s just you got to get out there and I love that he gave credit to someone else contributing to his success because I feel the same way about several people that helped me train and blind taste leading up to the exam.

Yeah right on at a cheers to people helping people out

that’s why I love the beer world.

Ant Blair 45:41
Indeed, circle back Lj to I want to know what that pink boots experience was like I kept seeing you post some stuff on it and I saw some stuff floating around on it for on Twitter, from pink boots would talk to me about that experience that looked like it was a lot of fun.

LJ Whirley 45:59
You know? It’s hard because like, as a non Brewer, I, it’s hard for me to stay focused sometimes during that stuff. So I’m like, Oh, look at all these women who I love and I just started networking with everybody and hanging out. But it’s really, it’s taken seriously by the Brewers. I think so we were at Goodman house, Derek took it very seriously. Um, his wife, Courtney runs a lot of stuff there. So like, this is the recipe. This is why we do this. This is why we’re putting the hops in at this time. And you know, Ryan was the same way Indiana city he let us do pretty much everything. So in I felt, I think we It was a mutual respect of he felt happy that we cared enough about it to be there and helped him out with the brew. And we just felt lucky that this guy let us into His space like this brewery is his home like this is his system. This is his equipment that he uses every day. And we’re all running around the brewery but it’s cool. It’s a to be with other women. super passionate about beer. from all different aspects because our women brewers, not you know, women brewers are definitely the minority in pink boots. Megan, the girl that I live with. She has been brewing at Fountain Square for several months now and learning the ropes on that. Kelly from Sun King is badass female Brewer. I don’t know if a lot of people know her.

Ant Blair 47:20

LJ Whirley 47:21
Oh man. She’s awesome. She shocked she taught me how to carry a 50 pound bag of barley or oats on my shoulder easily. You know, you don’t have to be very strong. She’s like, here’s how you do it. So she taught me how to carry a bag on my shoulder. You know, obviously Elise Scarlet lane, badass female brewer. She ow she has all those new locations. So I hope she’s doing all right. So too,

Ant Blair 47:44
I know that they shut down the I think the the main one where they brought

LJ Whirley 47:51
Yeah I’m sure they lost the foot traffic.

Ant Blair 47:54
Yeah. So I know that they’re they’re dialing it back and I hope that they’re able to make it through this

LJ Whirley 48:00
Same. so many places at the top of their game, but, but uh, to finish the the pink boots thing. It’s just fun. And then Lauren metazoa. So metazoa didn’t want to have reached out to a lot of the distributors. So we actually had a rep from a place that donated the malts we have like, country. What was the malt place a couple malt places that came in Yakima chief hops had a rep there. So they like talk to us about the ingredients. And that was fun, too. So it’s a unique experience when it’s done at different breweries. And this was the first year that we did three different brews. So, I mean, it was super fun to do a different group of ladies every time at the brew different brewers helping us out and yeah, the group has really grown over the last couple years when it first started, there were like five women in it and now I think there’s 50 so That’s dope. It’s cool. It’s it’s really good networking because we we run in a lot of the same all the same paths, but It’s totally different job codes you know there’s some very few women bureau reps also I get em Emma for craft road she’s worked for tax man is like super badass female beer up not too many of those running around. So it’s fun. Yeah. And like, in my experience, obviously is pretty different compared to a lot of people’s as well. So I work at a museum so it’s not we collaborate a lot and definitely help each other out when we can. We don’t need that much help though. We get it… we know what’s going on.

That’s right. That’s right. That’s awesome. That is awesome. I was sad to are sad to see I thought I saw on Instagram that you were going to be guest beer tender for the release that he had beer.

Yeah, so that’s a fun thing I did last year at at the coal ship. So this was about a time where one was so Do you know Jesse used to work at Koelschip?

Ant Blair 50:02
Yeah, I do. I actually he actually poured a beer into my mouth when there was other half tap takeover. Oh my god, girl, I have to see the video of that it was apeshit crazy.

LJ Whirley 50:17
I’m gonna I’m gonna text him after this and tell him Yeah, shout out Jessie. Hello. I’m one of your people that I know. I think he has an eyeball tattoo right here

Ant Blair 50:26
he does.

LJ Whirley 50:29
Uh, but so this was I think a year ago, Indiana was going to cut the budget for Special Olympics like in the Special Olympics. And we were like, Oh, hell no. And we want to do something for a while. So we bartended at the cool ship. And we did pitch arounds with a Cicerone. And we paired two drones with beers, and donate all the tips. So we like work for free and donate all the tips to in the Special Olympics, and we raised $500 in just a few hours. So we took that model and we’re going to do that. For Indiana city for pink boots, so Nicole Elise and I were going to bartend at Indiana city and then donate all of our tips to the organization. So we’ll do it again sometime. But yeah, that’s that’s a fun thing. It’s uh, I like guest bartending places for free and donating money to stuff I like so

duly noted.

Yeah, I don’t, I don’t get a chance to get back there like and also my employees are going to come I was hoping to get really busy and then kind of, like get my ass kicked so that it would be funny so my staff can make fun of me. Because I’m always like, Come on, guys. We gotta go. We gotta get his beers out. And then they were going to show up and try to see if I was going to be able to keep keep up with everything, but I haven’t Alright,

I don’t know back to what we said earlier about Coronavirus being so inconvenient.

It’s very inconvenient,

you know, things that you’re doing things that we were doing things that everybody was doing and that this freakin happened and so you know, here we are Is it what is it just that the pink boots beer that you just showed me? Is that just Hey, it’s just in cans now and you can grab it and that’s pretty much the end of it. Now what? I’m guessing I’m not sure does the price do the proceeds go to pink girl does that go to a charity or

so there’s two ways we make money from it to the organization overall so the the corporate office gets the collects money from the hop sales. So we the breweries purchase the hops from Yakima chief hops and Yakima chief donates, I think like 50% of total sales back into organization. And then pink boots, you can apply for scholarships through pink boots, and that’s what they spend the money on. They’ll sponsor women taking Cicerone or you know, different classes. And then locally once the beer is brewed, we do parties that raise money per pint, so that we’ve really suffered and being able to raise money for our local chapters. Because all the events we have planned for canceled where at least $1 or two per pint would have gone back into our local chapter. So it’s a pretty big fundraiser for us, you know, we were going to be pouring at death and taxes, Leo was going to get a booth set up for us to pour all the beers. And I was going to have I had like pre ordered, like 20 cases or so of this beer for new fields. So I think the breweries will have no no problem selling these beers, because it’s perfect time to drink a nice hoppy beer. But you won’t be able to raise money for our organs, our local chapter. So the organizations finally raise money for that. But locally, we’ll have to figure out a way to make up those funds later on in the year.

And that hasn’t been done yet. Like there. Are there any ideas floating around? And the reason why I asked that question is because I’m asking everybody who I’m having conversations with how how can we help How can the community help with any initiatives that are developing bubbling up with what’s going on right now and in, in the aftermath of what’s going on?

Um, and honestly, like, I don’t want this sound negative towards pink boots, but I think this is all of us work in beer. Not that this is our like, we don’t care about raising money for women and beer education. But I think right now we’re just mainly concerned with keeping all these breweries open. Yeah, a lot of us wouldn’t have jobs if the breweries worked at closed. So it’s kind of been put on hold right now. So we a lot of people are just trying to figure out how to get there, you know, do they have a job right now, as opposed to how we can raise money to further your education. So I’ve been talking to a few of my my lady friends and we’ve been doing some beer studying and beer tasting and stuff, but I think that’s more of what we’re focusing on right now is just Keeping up with beer education independently, and then how do we support the breweries that did this collaboration beer for us afterwards? You know, like metazoa and Deanna city and Goodman house, they let us use their resources, their time, their equipment, their products to make a bunch of beer. So I think Goodman house sold through there’s this, this was just canned like this just got canned a few days ago. So it was I think it was a it was a 15 or 20 barrel batch. So there’s a lot of it. So, um, but Indiana city is good at keeping a pretty confined beer list. So I think there’s something for everybody, but they’re not probably going to be sitting on this for too long.

Ant Blair 55:41
Yeah, I don’t think so. I remember we talked about this way, way, way, way, way in the beginning, on the Monday, when the governor was like, yo, we’re locking shit down. I think it was on Wednesday. Type shit. Me and heaven. We went up to Indiana city and we went up to metazoa we had just did our first live mo head yall show.

LJ Whirley 56:07
I had something that night so I couldn’t go

Ant Blair 56:10
well I felt the good vibes though. It was a great it was great. We raised enough money to get basically four greyhounds adopted. And that whole thing now is really dope was something that was super brand new and Yeah, prison greyhounds that I didn’t know a whole lot about them until I sat down and start talking with Erin. And that it was it was really good so that that we just came off that when everything started hitting the fan like that Thursday, Friday, Saturday, so had an event at Indiana city for a talk on it. It’s a they is drug substance abuse. Not never alone project. Yeah. Oh yeah, never alone project. So that was gonna be the next one. And we had a really good turnout and a really good response for the venue. We were going to do this bigger space Indiana city and do this thing. And I’m sitting over the weekend trying to decide, damn, do we do this event on Thursday? And then the governor made the decision for me.

LJ Whirley 57:28
And honestly, I appreciate that I don’t like I didn’t like being in charge like Nicole and I and DNC were like, hey, are we doing this event? And I’m, we’re just like, I don’t I’m like, I’m still down. You know, I’m not. I’m down if you’re down and then it was like, we can’t do this. And then john Hall, the Brewmaster metazoa. Hall,

Ant Blair 57:47
shout out to chi.

LJ Whirley 57:49
He is so talented and so wonderful.

Ant Blair 57:51
He’s a good dude. I enjoy talking to him.

LJ Whirley 57:53
There are new fields members, his wife and family.

Ant Blair 57:56
I didn’t know that. Okay,

LJ Whirley 57:57
so yeah, we love them and they’re really So good to us. But he was we were co hosting and all about American IPAs beer class, the Wednesday that happened. Shut it down. We had to refund it. And it was it had really good. We had sold a lot of tickets to it and we’re going to feature different metazoa beers and a couple classics and that sucks.

Ant Blair 58:17
That’s, yeah, sucks. It sucks. You know, it sucks. And, you know, we did the best that we could that Monday, that Monday after the weekend and I was like, man, I don’t think we can do it. And that’s where I landed on it. But then the governor then confirmed it and decided for me if I would have decided the other way. And we went to metazoa and we went to Indiana city and just Lj it was walking in the door and it was deer in the headlights type of thing because it just so hard and so fast and people were saying what are we gonna do right Right now because this wasn’t a thing on Friday, and here we are Monday. And we, you know, we bought as much beer as we could reasonably afford, you know, to support them. And I in all the way back to the very, very beginning like you said, it’s it’s a struggle so right at that point in time, I had no problem going out in support and you know, there’s local businesses and things like that, but now, I’m like, Man, fuck, I don’t know if this responsible to be going out and, you know, doing these things.

LJ Whirley 59:37
I don’t think that we’re wrong for feeling that way. But I think it’s pretty shitty. That brew like breweries are still allowed to be open. So the government is saying that it’s fine. So why, like why are they should they be punished for still just trying to get by? So I guess I don’t want beer to shut down. I want people to think Fine, but if they’re like, you can’t say you can’t say stay home. And you can’t say that breweries are essential businesses. Yeah, I work with Megan you know, Megan and Brian living with them. They’re like they’re still going into work. So, I mean, I’m not going anywhere but I mean, there’s a lot of variables that are come into this house because of that, you know, we’re very clean and safe and like how many people are actually going to get beer right now? You know that their hours keep getting smaller and smaller but and then oh, like liquor stores are today switch to that pickup. It’s, it just really seems like no one’s willing to make the call on it.

Ant Blair 1:00:46
That’s exactly right. And here in here, Lj in Michigan. Oh, weed is essential. Oh, yeah. Oh, yeah. I can go to the weed store. I can get weed deliver. Well, that is reduced. But there but there is

LJ Whirley 1:01:05
As soon as you roll down into northern Indiana you’re gonna get arrested. So it’s another another topic for another day.

But just to illustrate to, to further illustrate the point of was considered essential

Yes, it means mean you could get real conspiracy and you know, revenue and taxes and all that kind of stuff but another thing I didn’t not to cut off that beautiful conversation Another thing I didn’t want to miss mentioning with you the special beard that we do in the beer garden with slinking among the leaves. So we just got in the fourth year like our fourth year of at the brew done, and, I mean, I do like I wonder like 10 or 20 cakes from them. And it’s only available now at Sun King downtown and not in the beer garden. So they do an Indiana style farmhouse ale like it says on so I’m on. I’m on my fourth or this is my fourth or fifth crowler also i freakin love crowlers, like look at this, look at this

Ant Blair 1:02:05
thats dope.

LJ Whirley 1:02:06
And that nice. So I don’t know if they still have this label left, they might have gone through them but it’s hard because on one end like to what we were just talking about, I want to go out to the world and be like, hey, new fields beer garden, people go support this, like go to Sun King and buy the spear that you love so much. But then, like, I was talking to our marketing team, like we can’t really tell people we can’t like be encouraging people leave the house right now to go get a beer. So it’s hard, like Sun King has done a lot for the beer garden. They’ve done a lot for me personally, a lot for the business that I manage. And just every year like they’re a huge partner for us and they spend a lot of time working with us closely on how to how we can better promote beer and have these awesome experiences with beer, new fields and It sucks. I’m like I, you know, I’m like, I’ll do I know I’ll keep buying this beer from you guys and I’ll do whatever you need. Like, if there’s anything you need, let me know. But I mean, like, these were 20 that 20 kegs of beer that were supposed to go in the beer garden and, you know, what can we do about that? Can’t do anything.

Ant Blair 1:03:22
Help me with your knowledge. Yeah, you can help me with your knowledge to help me understand how fast does a beer decline sitting in a keg?

LJ Whirley 1:03:35
Yeah, so they keep all their kegs cold because 99% of domestic cakes are unpasteurized just because they’re going to go right on draft anyway, so why spend the time energy to pasteurize them? So I know something specifically, Dave colt, the the brewer and owner he he puts a three month shelf life on almost all his beers. Because that’s just that’s his brand. That’s his beer. I personally have had this beer after three months and it’s still great. So I know if we opened by June I’ll probably still be able to put these on. But Indiana city I had there was a double dry hops hazy that I had put in an order for like 10 or 15 cases and like that falls off so fast like I can’t, you know, I can’t buy like that’s, you know, an IPA. Like luckily I took almost every IPA that we had in our walk and new fields to my fridge. When all that happened, sorry, new fields. I did it. I’ll pay for it. It’s fine. It was for the beer class that got canceled, but only beer I have our loggers and darker beers that will be fine during you know, the next few months but yeah, anything with the with the malt like a super hoppy presence or like really hoppy beer. It’s gonna fall off the face on well hang on for a little while it tastes so good right now it’s so fresh and nice like dry Canna meal some old school some England have some English hops in there some Liberty hops so it’s just it’s so good I’m really sad that everybody’s not enjoying it right now but is what it is yeah, god damn it. I know it is what it all in it it’s not happening just to us you know it’s a it’s happening to literally everyone almost in the entire world so

Ant Blair 1:05:35
well not even almost… everybody in the entire world

LJ Whirley 1:05:40
I was looking there are a couple places that have almost no cases when I was last time I looked at it seems like out west some of those like now Montana and those states that no one lives close to anybody anyways, they’re doing all right. Hang out. So I was supposed to go to Germany this summer, and just Live. So it hasn’t officially been called off yet, but I’m gonna say it’s a pretty safe bet that I’m not not going to Munich this summer.

That’s probably a safe bet.

Yes. So that’s to say, I’m trying to look at it positively like, oh, I’ll just put that money back in my savings account, but I would rather have put it into the hole on my face into my see lots of beer. But yeah, yeah.

Ant Blair 1:06:29
Well, Lj I guess when I’m not going to get to that second beer.

LJ Whirley 1:06:33
No, we shouldn’t do it.

I’m going to eventually but not now.

Sorry, if we sorry, if we derailed from what you want to talk about, but no, exactly what needed to happen. Yeah, I mean, it’s just, it’s so there’s something that feels comforting about being able to talk to other people in the industry, living other places right now. And, like, this is normal. Like, I mean, it’s not normal, but I’m not alone in this, it’s nice. I can’t wait to listen to the podcasts with Xavier and hear what’s going on with them. And yeah, just hopefully people keep supporting local breweries in the safest way they can, but I hope that the government will step in and make the decision for, you know, they’ll make a decision for everybody that’s safe. And that keeps people keep it keeps businesses open post COVID-19.

Ant Blair 1:07:29
So, yeah, I’m going to agree with that. It’s a bad spot for them to be in. And that’s all I can say. Really. It really is. I was going to ask you if you had any thing that you wanted to like parting parting shots or final thoughts that you wanted to share with folks and it sounds like that might have been Yeah, give you a chance to say something else if it’s going to be different.

LJ Whirley 1:07:57
Yeah, I mean, I said theres Still a lot of room for people to make their own decisions right now, if you’re even suspecting that you could be infected, definitely don’t go get a beer. That’s the last thing you should be doing right now. I think there is an appreciation from the hospitality community in the food and beverage world. They’re feeling the love, I think from those of us who really are in that zone with them, but I think there also is room for people to be understanding. If you’re not supporting your local brewery right now, if you’re not able to go spend extra money to get your favorite carry out pizza or you just don’t feel like it’s responsible. Just like you know our conversation last time about you shouldn’t feel bad about drinking a Miller high life. I don’t think you should feel bad about the stance that you’ve decided to take during this. And if you’ve decided that you’re going to stay home and stay safe. You shouldn’t feel bad about not supporting your local breweries. And if you are feeling like you’re being very responsible, you’re wearing gloves, you’re sanitizing and you were able to go do a no contact pickup and support your brewery. Right now that’s totally legal and fine. And I think you shouldn’t be made to feel bad for supporting your local brewery. So, yeah, I think it’s right now, there’s still a lot of flexibility. And I don’t think that will be the case in the upcoming weeks. But I think we should kind of respect that people are still allowed to make their own decision right now.

Ant Blair 1:09:22
Well said, Lj, I agree with all of that. I want to also reiterate the point of whichever side of that fence a person is on, don’t shit on the person on the other side of the fence that you’re on. Yep. Because to your point, we all have, we all have the blessing the gift to make our own decisions. My decision might not be the decision that you will make, but honor the fact that I took advantage of my right to make a decision. Absolutely. Don’t be an asshole.

LJ Whirley 1:09:55
Don’t be an asshole.I’ll do me and let’s just keep it Yep,

2020 beer campaign is just don’t be a dick and let people make their own decisions.

Don’t be a dick. Let people make their own decisions. Hashtag election. 2020

Well, I miss you. I hope everything’s going well. Sending good vibes to Flint.


and hopefully we can hop on for a virtual beer again soon. drink the beer that we didn’t drink today.

Ant Blair 1:10:26

LJ Whirley 1:10:28
I will. Thanks for having me on. And cheers to you, sir.

Ant Blair 1:10:32
Yeah, cheers to you, Lj Good to see you. Be safe.

LJ Whirley 1:10:36
Stay safe.

Heaven Brainz

Author Heaven Brainz

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