Featured Beer Blogger: EUGENE KOLANKOWSKY

Written by Wenchie. Posted in Blogger Interviews

Tagged: a tale of two brewers, , , , , eugene kolankowsky,

Featured Beer Blogger: EUGENE KOLANKOWSKY

Published on July 21, 2010 with No Comments


The Beer Blogger Interview Series

Curious what goes on in the minds of your favorite beer bloggers? Well, The Beer Wench is and she has embarked upon a mission to interview as many beer bloggers that she can — from all over the world. Are you a beer blogger? Do you want to share your story? Send me an email!



Beer Blogger Interview

Full name: Eugene Kolankowsky
Twitter handle: @Splobucket
Name of blog: A Tale of Two Brewers

Background “Snapshot”

1. Where did you grow up?

I grew up in upstate New York just outside the town of Poughkeepsie.

2. What sports if any did you play growing up, through college and beyond?

I was mainly into track and field. I began to Pole Vault in High School and did it all the way through college. I continue to coach two Pole Vaulting teams at local Florida schools.

3. How old were you when you had your first beer?

I’m a coach for a team so I have to set a good example. I’m going
to lie and say 21.

4. If you can recall, what is the story of your first beer? Where did you have it? What style and brand was it?

As I recall, it was at a crew party. I said I wasn’t going to drink, but someone offered me his Tequiza. I don’t remember what it tasted like and I haven’t had one since, but I do remember it was a Tequiza.

5. Where, if applicable, did you go to college? What did you study? What additional activities, organizations, sports did you partake in during college?

Ha, I went to nerd school. Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, NY. I got my degree in Mechanical Engineering. I didn’t do any other official activities other than Track, but I did frequently play on my (now wife’s) sorority intramural soccer team. They were the only people who didn’t about my ineptitude at soccer. I also did a lot of snowboarding and mountain biking.

Craft Beer Epiphany

Every craft beer enthusiast has at least one pinnacle craft beer experience that completely changes ones perspective on beer. I refer to this mind-blowing moment as a “craft beer epiphany.”

1. What was your first craft beer epiphany? Recall as many details about it as you can:

That’s an amazing question. I never thought of it like that but it’s totally true. My current brewing aspirations do stem back to my first real craft beer. It started around Christmas in 2005. I went and visited Nick at Lehigh and we exchanged gifts. I got him some little disco ball, and he got me a bottle of St. Bernardus ABT 12. I was surprised, thinking “he got me beer as a gift???” But then I tasted it, and here’s where I am today. I’m totally obsessed with the world of craft beers. I suppose Nick can take all the credit for this obsession.

2. Have you have additional craft beer epiphanies since the first? Detail as many of them as you wish:

I suppose the other one I had was when I realized I could brew my own beer, and thought a kit would be a totally awesome birthday gift. And it was!

Beer Blog Background

1. How long have you been writing your beer blog?

The blog has been going for almost exactly a year strong, but Nick just joined up about 2 or 3 weeks ago.

2. What inspired you to start writing your blog?

I started brewing beer, and I just kinda felt like writing about it. Nothing really more interesting than that.

3. Why did you chose the name of your blog?

Well when I started brewing I was brewing with this guy Dave. Hence two brewers. Well he fell off the face of the earth, so I invited Nick along for the ride. He’s been a great friend for so long, and he is relatively new to the brewing process as well. It just sorta felt right.

4. What are you personal goals for your blog? What do you hope to achieve with it?

My dream is to open my own brewery. I would absolutely love that. I tell people that I’ll be the next Sam Adams, except better. And when I’m famous for making beer, I can use the blog to outline the story of my book about how I came to be.

5. What is one of the coolest things that happened to you as a result of being a beer blogger?

Well the site has really just started catching on. But recently I wrote an article about the draughtkeg, and I ended up getting some inside info and a free sample out of it. It really made it feel like it’s starting to get some traction.

6. What are you top 3 favorite beer blogs/beer websites?

I do a lot of research on the forums over at Homebrewtalk.com. The boys over at mondaynightbrewing.com are entertaining, and they’re about to hit the big time. I also order a good amount of stuff off NorthernBrewer.com.

Beer Talk

1. What are your top 3 favorite beer styles?

Pilsner, Stout, HefeWeizen

2. What are your top 3 favorite breweries?

Stone, Ommegang, Mississippi Brewing Co. (have you ever had
Mississippi Mud? Awesome bottle, more awesome beer)

3. If you could work with or for any one brewery, which one would it be and why?

Hmmm… I guess I’ll say Stone. They seem like they’ve got their
stuff together, and they have a good variety of beers.

4. Are you a homebrewer? If yes, what is the most unique and interesting beer recipes you’ve brewed as a homebrewer?

I am a homebrewer. But so far I haven’t gone that crazy on my recipes. I did try a nut brown ale with pistachios. Didn’t turn out great.

5. Do you have any beer certifications (BJCP, Cicerone, Siebel, American Brewers Guild)?? If so, what are they?

Well, I’m part of the American Homebrewers Association, does that count?

6. What is your favorite beer and food pairing?

Smoked Porter & Burgers

The Personal Side

1. What is your current day job?

I’m a forensic mechanical engineer. I find out why stuff breaks.

2. If you could change your career at this very moment, without any restrictions on what you could do, what would you want to do and why?

I’d be running my own brewery. I love making beer, and I love the satisfaction in seeing people enjoy it.

4. Are you married? Children?

Married, yes. No children, but three Golden Retrievers (nice furry four-legged kids). Their names are Sandi, Savannah, and Samson.

5. Outside of beer and writing, what are some of your other hobbies?

Well, I coach two local high schools in the pole vault. I also just took up Skeet Shooting. I’m also a gamer at heart. I’d say those are still my main hobbies at this point.

Off The Beaten Path

1. If you were a style of beer, what style would be an why?

I’d say a hoppy pale ale. Smooth, refreshing, GREAT body. But will also come back and bite you in the ass if you look at me wrong.

2. You were caught smuggling beer illegally, which has now been made punishable by death. Right before you are sent to the executioner, you are offered one last beer. What beer would you chose and why?

I’d get a two liter boot of the strongest and most potent stuff I could get. Get as drunk as possible, as quickly as possible, so I don’t realize what the hell is going on.

3. If I contracted you to brew a beer (or design a beer recipe) called “The Beer Wench” — what style would you chose and what, if any, extra ingredients would you add?

Shooting from the hip here, but I’d say a porter. It’s gotta be something bitter and aged (in reference to a stereotypical wench of course, not you). So maybe a belgian ale. Maybe add some different
fruits. But not heavy, just a hint.

4. If you could be a superhero, what would you want your superpowers to be?

Flying would be soooo badass.

5. What is one of the craziest things you have ever done and lived to tell the story?

Cliff jumping off an 80 foot cliff. I realize this isn’t totally
crazy, but it was enough for me.

6. What are your thoughts on bacon?




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