Listen to Learn:
Scott Parton, known as Arkansas’ Beer Ambassador, was born in Missouri but raised in the small town of Piggott, Arkansas. He also attended Arkansas State University in the neighboring city, Jonesboro.
He's worked for Stephens as an Operations Analyst for the past 25 years, but his claim to fame has nothing to with computers but craft beer. Scott does not yet own a brewery, though he has dabbled in making his own beer. No, Scott's claim to fame is through enlightening people about different types of beers and being the liaison between local breweries and beer enthusiasts.
He co-hosts a show on 103.7 The Buzz called Tap Time that explores the growth of Arkansas' craft beer scene and what it takes to make a good beer. Scott has a passion for writing and has often written articles for various magazines and websites.
He runs arkbeerscene.com, a blog all about beer which he uses to keep his readers informed about what is going on in Arkansas' craft beer scene. Scott is also very active on Twitter, and you might follow him and not even know it. His handle isn't his name but instead is @WooPigBrewie.
[00:00:08] GM: Welcome to Up in Your Business with Kerry McCoy, a production of flagandbanner.com. Through storytelling and conversational interviews, this weekly radio show and podcast offers listeners an insider’s view into the commonalities of successful people and the ups and downs of risk-taking. Connect with Kerry through her candid, funny, informative and always encouraging weekly blog.
[00:00:29] KM: My guest today is a self-proclaimed Arkansas craft beer evangelist and beer ambassador for Arkansas, Mr. Scott Parton. Scott is the author of Arkansas Beer Scene Blog, co-host of Tap Time on 103.7 The Buzz and as well-known by his Twitter handle, @WooPigBrewey.
Besides being a beer know-it-all, Scott's interest also lie in baseball, more specifically, the St. Louis Cardinals. Music, again more specifically, heavy metal. Weird. Okay. I mean, he seems too old for heavy metal, but maybe he isn't. When this craft beer aficionado is not sampling beer, watching baseball, or listening to music, he has another heady job as a longtime employee and IT operations analyst at Stevens Inc. in Little Rock, Arkansas.
It is my great pleasure to welcome to the table and the microphone, the man with many hobbies, and as the French would say, beer sommelier and Italians would say, beer cicerone, and as I would say, beer expert, Mr. Scott Parton. Now, Gray’s over here about to die, because he hates the way I massacred that word.
[00:01:47] GM: Sommelier. Please. Please, it’s the word sommelier.
[00:01:49] KM: Okay. Say sommelier.
[00:01:50] GM: There you go.
[00:01:52] KM: Beer sommelier. That's French.
[00:01:53] GM: Perfect.
[00:01:54] KM: Then the Italians would say – This one I just learned today too. Cicerone. Say that in Italian, Gray.
[00:02:02] GM: I’m not sure what the word is.
[00:02:03] KM: Cicerone.
[00:02:04] GM: Is it Cicerone?
[00:02:04] KM: Say it with an Italian accent. Cicerone.
[00:02:07] GM: Yeah, like that.
[00:02:08] SP: Now, you have to take a test to be a Cicerone. Technically, I’m not a Cicerone.
[00:02:11] KM: Is that true?
[00:02:12] SP: True. I have quite a few friends who are Cicerone.
[00:02:15] KM: Well, in Latin, the word Cicerone means, Cicerone, by the way. I just heard –
[00:02:20] SP: I think you know, I'm not one kicking and pronouncing.
[00:02:22] KM: Unless, dictionary.com is wrong, because –
[00:02:25] GM: I see it now. Cicerone.
[00:02:30] SP: Wow.
[00:02:31] GM: Yeah. Cicerone. That sounds better.
[00:02:34] KM: Say it again.
[00:02:36] GM: I think it's Cicerone. I think.
[00:02:38] SP: I’ll go with that.
[00:02:40] KM: Well, you know. Gray’s a trained opera singer. He had to learn Italian. He had to learn French and he had to learn German, because they don't sing Italian. They don't sing opera in English, because it's just not pretty.
Scott, let's start at the beginning. I thought maybe you weren't from Arkansas, but you're from Piggott, Arkansas, and you went to school in Jonesborough.
[00:03:01] SP: Northeast Arkansas. Yes. Actually, I was born in Southeast Missouri. Moved to Piggott when I was very young. I grew up there, all the way through school. Went to ASU and then seemed like the opportunities were really in Central Arkansas, bigger city. When I was growing up, I like to go to the bigger cities. We hung around Memphis a lot, or Little Rock, or St. Louis. I just, yeah, migrated to Little Rock and I’ve been here ever since.
[00:03:26] KM: What did you go to school for?
[00:03:28] SP: Computer science.
[00:03:29] KM: Yeah, because you work for Stevens.
[00:03:31] SP: Yeah. Back in the day, computer science meant Fortran and Pascal, all these dead languages. Really, my job has absolutely nothing to do with what I learned in college. I started at Siemens, and now I'm in the database administration, or scheduling, reporting those jobs, software support, that kind of thing. I think what I learned in college has done me absolutely no good when I got out of there.
[00:03:57] KM: You hear that all the time.
[00:04:00] SP: I love Little Rock. I stayed. I've been here 26 years, and I just like it here a lot better. There's a lot more to do.
[00:04:07] KM: In learning about you, I learned that you liked the St. Louis Cardinals. You lived in St. Louis?
[00:04:14] SP: No. My grandfather was a huge Cardinal fan. My dad was a huge Cardinal fan. Naturally, I listened to him as I was growing up, the old John Grisham tales of sitting on the front porch, listening to the Cardinals. That’s how people in Arkansas were. I did exactly that. When I moved down here, we had the AA Cardinal Farm Club. I got season tickets to them and went every night, sat in the front row every night. That was the players that were going to end up in St. Louis are a lot more anyway. It just stoke the fires of my Cardinal fandom, I guess, you would say. Actually, ran their website for them. Their first website, I created a forum. Did their fan website forum. Did that for several years and then –
[00:04:57] KM: You created the website for the St. Louis Cardinals?
[00:04:59] SP: No, no, no. For the Arkansas travelers. The travs. Yeah. Well, that was when websites were just starting. We were just getting off of AOL and all that stuff. Websites were just starting to pop up, so 96-ish. 97. I did a little quick down and dirty website. I mean, one of my buddies helped me. They liked it and they said, “Hey, can we use this?” We just parked it out there for him. I had a digital camera, which was pretty cool at the time.
I would take pictures at the game at night and post them and the players’ families would ask for pictures of their son, or whatever. That just became a real big hobby of mine for several years. I don't remember really why I got away from it. I still go to a lot of Travs games, but when they moved to North Little Rock, they took over their own website. It was different. Ray Winterfield was a special, special place. Just really, we were sitting right on top of the field. I mean, we had front row seats. You really felt like you were part of it. It was just unique. I think when they moved to the new park, which I absolutely love, I think it's outstanding, and I love to go out there too. I don't think it's as personal as it was back then. Then Cardinals left. They pulled out of here and they got replaced by The Angels. For me, that was just – broke the –
[00:06:18] KM: What do you mean the Cardinals left? Were the St. Louis Cardinals here?
[00:06:22] SP: The Cardinals minor league team was the travelers. It was the AA team.
[00:06:25] KM: Oh, I think I remember that. Okay.
[00:06:26] SP: Yeah. It's been a while now. It's been over 20 years. Then we lost them. They moved to Springfield and the angels foreign team took their place here. Since then, they've switched to Seattle Mariners. I don't have a personal connection with them.
[00:06:38] KM: Where did the name Travelers come from?
[00:06:41] SP: Well, that one's been around for –
[00:06:43] KM: We have the Arkansas Travelers. We had the St. Louis Cardinals. Both of them were here?
[00:06:47] SP: No. They were just the farm team for the Cardinals.
[00:06:50] KM: What does that mean, farm team?
[00:06:52] SP: The minor league players. If you play well, you get called up to the next level and eventually, you can make it up to the Cardinals. Some great Cardinals actually played in Ray Winterfield. Still at this bar, not Cardinals, but other teams now. Minor league is just their growing up for players.
[00:07:11] KM: Well, beer drinking and baseball really go together.
[00:07:13] SP: Oh, perfect.
[00:07:14] KM: I don't understand heavy metal, where that comes into play.
[00:07:18] SP: Yeah. I don't know how that one landed.
[00:07:20] KM: Didn't you make a website? Didn't you do your first blog about heavy metal, or something?
[00:07:24] SP: Yeah, I had some heavy metal stuff in there. Once upon a time, I used to write for a metal site. Wrote anonymously. I did a lot of their album reviews and DVD reviews and things like that, forum moderated their board. That was just a two or three years there. I was really enjoying that. I've always been the metal head. I know I don't look like a metal head.
[00:07:45] KM: No. How long ago was –
[00:07:46] SP: Maybe I’m too old to be a metal heald.
[00:07:48] KM: Do you still like it?
[00:07:48] SP: Oh, yeah. Yeah. I can't wait to get back in the club.
[00:07:51] KM: Who are the big metal band? Foo Fighters or something like that?
[00:07:54] SP: Oh, I love Foo Fighters. I like a little heavier, like Korn Metallica and Megadeath. Some of those are some of my favorite bands.
[00:08:03] KM: Was that your first blog that you did was for heavy metal?
[00:08:09] SP: Really, the travelers was the first blog. Yeah. It wasn’t called a blog then. It was just, I'd set up a website called Travs Fan and I updated it with stats and gave a player of the week and did all those. Technically, it was really a blog, but I don't think we call them blogs then.
[00:08:24] KM: No, probably not.
[00:08:26] SP: I'm telling my age here really, aren't I?
[00:08:29] KM: Well, I started blogging in 2004. I was one of the first bloggers. You're right. We did not start blogging in 2000, on 1996, or 7.
[00:08:38] SP: No. There weren't that many website. I mean, imagine a team the size of the Travelers, with the popularity of the – They didn't have a website. It's crazy to think about now, because every single thing you look at has a website. There were no websites in. I was just looking for something fun to do it.
[00:08:54] KM: Where did you do the metal website?
[00:08:57] SP: Oh, they were based out of Los Angeles, where a lot of the metal bands were from.
[00:09:01] KM: How'd you get that gig? Did they pay you for it?
[00:09:04] SP: Yeah. I just knew the guy who ran it from going to shows out there, or meeting people when they toured, meeting bands when they came through. I just fell onto that –
[00:09:15] KM: Did you get paid for the Travelers work that you did?
[00:09:17] SP: No, I never did. I never wanted to, or asked for it.
[00:09:20] KM: Did any these jobs lead you to the – lead you to your Stevens job?
[00:09:24] SP: No. I was doing that the whole time. These were just hobbies. To me, I wasn't even thinking about making any money off any of them.
[00:09:32] KM: Sometimes your hobbies lead you into places. Really good jobs.
[00:09:37] SP: Yeah. Just neither one of – I mean, I would have liked to work in minor league baseball, for sure. I never applied for any jobs, because Stevens pays well. I like it and there's a lot of great people there and I just really wasn't interested in leaving.
[00:09:53] KM: That's great. This is a great place to take a break. When we come back, we'll continue our conversation with Arkansas beer ambassador, Mr. Scott Parton. Scott is the author of the Arkansas Beer Scene Blog, co-host of Tap Time on 103.7 The Buzz and is popularly known by his Twitter handle @WooPigBrewey. When we come back, we're going to talk all things beer, and all the intricacies of it, about the business of it. We're going to sample beers and find out where to drink the best beer and my favorite, the coldest beer in town. We'll be right back.
[00:10:26] GM: You're listening to Up In your Business with Kerry McCoy, a production of flagandbanner.com. Over 40 years ago with only $400, Kerry founded Arkansas Flag and Banner. During the last four decades, the business has grown and changed, along with Kerry's experience and leadership knowledge.
In 1995, she embraced the internet and rebranded her company as simply flagandbanner.com. In 2004, she became an early blogger. Since then, she has founded the non-profit Friends of Dreamland Ballroom, began publishing her magazine, Brave. In 2016, branched out into this very radio show, YouTube channel and podcast. In 2020, Kerry McCoy enterprises acquired ourcornermarket.com, an online company specializing in American made plaques, signage and memorials for over 20 years. If you'd like to sponsor this show, or get involved with any of Kerry McCoy's enterprises, send an email to me. That's firstname.lastname@example.org. Telling American made stories, selling American made flags, the flagandbanner.com. Back to you, Kerry.
[00:11:34] KM: You're listening to Up In your Business with me, Kerry McCoy and I'm speaking today with Mr. Scott Parton and Arkansas beer ambassador, known for his Arkansas Beer Scene Blog, co-hosting Tap Time, Wednesdays at 7 p.m. on 103.7 The Buzz, and for is Woo Pig Brewery tweets.
All right. Before the break, we talked about how you got your great career going, how you learned about blogging. Now, we're going to talk about all things beer. You've been blogging about beer for 15 years?
[00:12:03] SP: Yeah, about the time craft beer really started taking off. I brewing beer. Me and a couple of buddies, we get together and we'd brew beer, because we didn't have that many choices around. Once you stepped outside of the flying saucer, most of the places you went to had your standard beer. We went and make around –
[00:12:19] KM: What year was this?
[00:12:20] SP: Probably 2005-ish. 2005, 2006.
[00:12:24] KM: What's the difference between a craft beer and just regular beer?
[00:12:28] SP: Well, I mean, there's technically a definition of if you make under X number of barrels of beer, you're considered a craft brewery.
[00:12:36] KM: It’s small quantities.
[00:12:38] SP: Yes, the smaller –
[00:12:39] KM: Small batch.
[00:12:39] SP: Yeah. To me, it's all craft. If you go to Budweiser, the facility there, I mean, that's a craft for those guys. They're really into their beer and they put a lot of work into it. There's a level of definition there that I think the industry uses.
[00:12:52] KM: Well, I read the Brewers Association, who has the mission of promoting and protecting small and independent American brewers, say that there are lines are blurring between the micro-breweries and the macro--breweries. The title of the article is Craft Versus Crafty. Anheuser-Busch is buying up small breweries and turning them into macro-breweries, or closing them and taking their name. That doesn't bother you?
[00:13:25] SP: Well, yeah. Because I think, what they're wanting to do is monopolize the tap handles. I think they want to own, let's say they own 10 different little breweries in different regions of the country. They want you to walk into a bar, think this is their plan, and see only their tap handles. Now you've got 10 different breweries to choose from, with all the monies is still with them. You lose that little local aspect.
[00:13:46] KM: Are they still brewing it locally, even though it's owned by them?
[00:13:50] SP: For the most part, I know, they bought up some breweries, and they've taken over their brewing process, or they brought their bigger flagship beers in house and started making it for them. Some of them, they've left alone and let them continue to do their thing. The battle for tap handles is what that's all about. There's only so many tap handles in the city. There's a fight for those things.
[00:14:10] KM: Tap handles.
[00:14:11] SP: The war for tap handle. That's the name of my book I'm going to write right there, war for tap handles, I guess.
[00:14:17] KM: What's the first thing we should look for when trying out a new craft beer? Are there variables like color, taste, density? When you go sampling beers at a new brewery, what are you looking for?
[00:14:33] SP: I just know the styles I like and I look for those. I talk to the bartender, or usually if you got some pretty smart people pouring the beers of now, they're familiar with all of it. You just tell them what you like. To say, I like something fruity, or I like something dark. I like something roasty. They can usually steer you in the right direction. I believe that philosophy. Everybody that says they don't like beer just hadn't found the one they like yet, because with a wide range of beers now, like if you tell somebody what you like, they can find you a beer.
[00:15:05] KM: Okay, you brought some beer.
[00:15:06] SP: I did bring a few.
[00:15:08] KM: All right. Off the tap.
[00:15:09] SP: Makes you feel like –
[00:15:10] KM: Pop a tap.
[00:15:12] GM: Can I do a little ASMR?
[00:15:13] KM: Yes. What's ASMR?
[00:15:16] GM: What does that stand for? Anybody remember? It's lie sound immersion, like scratching on microphones and stuff.
[00:15:23] KM: Okay, we’ll pop that.
[00:15:24] GM: All right. This one is – should I do a beer or a cider? Should we e do a cider, since mom's –
[00:15:31] KM: Let's do a beer first.
[00:15:32] GM: Let’s do a beer first. Okay.
[00:15:33] KM: The reason they're asking that to the listeners is because I'm gluten-free, and so I don't drink beer, because it's full of wheat. I brought ciders. Scott brought one. Scott, pick out one. Which one you like?
[00:15:46] GM: Yeah. Scott, you tell me which one. This one?
[00:15:47] SP: Fourth, that maple beer.
[00:15:49] GM: Okay. This is Jackalope Brewing Company, Bear Walker. Brewed with maple syrup.
[00:15:57] SP: This is probably the only one on this entire table that's not actually from Arkansas, but they are available in Arkansas. Ain’t that a beautiful sound?
[00:16:04] GM: Doesn’t that make you feel good?
[00:16:05] SP: I feel like I'm on my regular radio show now.
[00:16:09] KM: You all drink on every – I hear 103.7, do you drink every time?
[00:16:13] SP: Pretty much. Yeah.
[00:16:14] KM: Oh, that's a good gig. Yeah.
[00:16:15] GM: Are you ready for the next part? Let’s see if I can do this.
[00:16:18] KM: No, you can't hear it.
[00:16:19] GM: Oh, it’s no fun. I like that fizzy noise.
[00:16:22] KM: Let me try that one. I know I'm gluten-free, but let me have some.
[00:16:23] GM: Oh, you’re going to hate this.
[00:16:24] KM: This is dark. This is called maple. It's dark. I'm expecting it to be syrupy.
[00:16:30] SP: I think you're going to find it not super syrupy.
[00:16:32] KM: Man, I haven't had a beer long. This is really, really good.
[00:16:35] GM: Careful mother.
[00:16:39] SP: That one has a –
[00:16:39] GM: That was nice.
[00:16:39] SP: - obviously, maple at it.
[00:16:40] GM: It does. You can taste the maple.
[00:16:43] KM: What’s the proper way to sample a beer? Is it like wine, you swish it around and you look for some –
[00:16:46] SP: I don’t do much swishing. I like to look at it in the light and see what it looks like. I like to get a good smell of it, because you can – your nose taste it before your taste buds do.
[00:16:55] KM: This is brown, brown too. I don't normally like brown beer.
[00:16:58] SP: Well, they added that maple to give it a little bit of that sweetness.
[00:17:02] SP: Just to say, it's sweet, but it's not like candy sweet. It's like maple. It's good.
[00:17:08] KM: Okay, what's the name of that one?
[00:17:10] GM: This is Bear Walker.
[00:17:13] KM: That's not from Arkansas?
[00:17:14] SP: That was in Nashville [inaudible 00:17:15]. They are available here in town. You can find them here. They've got three beers here. That's one of them. That's remotely close by beer. We had them on the show about a month ago. They're super nice people. I like all their beers. We visited their brewery when we’ve been to Nashville before. You ever go to Nashville, it's a fun place to stop by, for sure. It's downtown there, by all the fun.
[00:17:36] GM: Jackalope.
[00:17:37] SP: Jackalope.
[00:17:39] KM: Where do we find it in Little Rock? Where have they got – What did you call it? The tap handle?
[00:17:43] SP: I don't know where they've got any taps. You can find the cans in a lot of the liquor stores now. They've just recently started pushing that out.
[00:17:50] KM: Gray, are you going to put a list of all these on our website, so that everybody that’s listening –
[00:17:55] SP: That's the other thing. You go into liquor store, they may have 500 different beers to choose from. You go to your typical restaurant, they're only going to have eight or 10 taps. They're not going to have a lot of variety. They may switch them out, some of the better restaurants keep changing them, keep different stuff. Whenever they find something customers like, those tab tap handles are locked in.
[00:18:15] KM: Where's your favorite place with the widest variety?
[00:18:18] SP: Flying saucers easily.
[00:18:20] KM: How many have they got?
[00:18:21] SP: They got 85 taps, I think.
[00:18:22] KM: No.
[00:18:23] SP: Yeah.
[00:18:23] GM: There's a whole wall.
[00:18:25] KM: That's not 85 on that wall. Did they not get stale? If you cork them, or whatever. What do you call it, keg? Tap it? What do you call it, Keg?
[00:18:33] SP: Yeah, tap it.
[00:18:34] KM: If you tap a keg, do they not start going stale?
[00:18:37] SP: They could if they don't get drank fast enough. Typically, you'll see them go on a sale or something after a little bit, but –
[00:18:42] KM: How long is a little bit?
[00:18:44] SP: Yeah, I couldn't answer that. That's a saucer people question.
[00:18:47] KM: Yeah, but what would you say?
[00:18:49] SP: If it's like an IPA, or a really hoppy beer, I think two or three months is too long to sit on it.
[00:18:55] KM: That’s a long time.
[00:18:57] SP: If you got a big stout or something, or Guinness keg or something, I think you got plenty of months before they really start changing the flavor.
[00:19:03] KM: Oh, that's a long time. I was thinking days.
[00:19:06] SP: No. The hoppier beers can lose a little of their kick.
[00:19:09] KM: Gray, you didn't give Scott a sip of that.
[00:19:11] GM: You're right. I didn't. Sorry. I'm trying not to burp on the microphone.
[00:19:15] KM: Quick guzzling. It’s just fun.
[00:19:16] GM: I have been guzzling off them.
[00:19:18] KM: Give Scott some of that one.
[00:19:19] SP: That make me feel more back. Completely mesmerized me on the other side of the microphone answering questions. I’m usually the one asking. It’s fun.
[00:19:27] KM: Do you hear that evil laugh. All right, there you go. Loosen up, baby.
[00:19:31] GM: Yeah, I’m into those.
[00:19:32] KM: Oh, yeah. Look, it looks just like a sommelier. Did I say it right, Gray?
[00:19:35] GM: Yeah, you did. Good job.
[00:19:37] SP: Just swishing it.
[00:19:39] KM: That’s good, isn’t it?
[00:19:39] GM: That’s good.
[00:19:40] SP: I do like that.
[00:19:40] KM: I’m more than having to take Advil tonight for inflammation for this.
[00:19:43] GM: Be careful. We're all going to hear about.
[00:19:45] KM: All right. Let's do another one.
[00:19:46] SP: All right. Well, everything else on this table is from instate This is all –
[00:19:53] KM: What’s the next one?
[00:19:53] GM: We could do a cider now, or –
[00:19:55] KM: No, no. Let's stick with beer and then we're going to gluten-free.
[00:19:57] SP: What do you think? This is the last here.
[00:19:59] GM: Is it brunch muffin?
[00:20:01] SP: That’s a Lost Forty brunch muffin.
[00:20:03] GM: That is the cutest name.
[00:20:04] KM: That’s something about that doesn't sound right.
[00:20:06] GM: Brunch muffin. A little lemon zest and blueberry.
[00:20:08] SP: Do you like blueberry?
[00:20:10] GM: Tart fruited ale.
[00:20:11] SP: Breakfast juice. Delicious.
[00:20:12] KM: Breakfast. Oh, breakfast beer. Okay. Maple beers are breakfast beer for your pancakes.
[00:20:16] GM: You did lean toward a breakfast. Maple syrup and blueberry.
[00:20:19] KM: Gray. Quit wasting so much time.
[00:20:20] GM: I’m just reading it.
[00:20:21] KM: Open it.
[00:20:21] GM: Ale brewed with blueberry, lemon, vanilla and milk sugar.
[00:20:25] SP: Lost Forty.
[00:20:26] KM: Can I use the same cup, or do I have to get another cup?
[00:20:30] SP: Let's clean it up.
[00:20:31] KM: Clean it up. We're going to run out of cups.
[00:20:34] SP: Now I’ll use the same cup.
[00:20:36] GM: It’s a really pretty color.
[00:20:37] KM: Oh. That doesn't look blue though. It's pink. All right, let me try. I have not had beer in probably 10 years.
[00:20:44] SP: Well, you've got one of the best breweries in the country right here in town. Lost Forty. They just won an award at the great American Beer Festival, which is the beer festival of all beer festivals in America. They won best mid-size brewery in America, but there is no best large brewery in America. Technically, they won the biggest award you can win.
We are fortunate enough to have right here in our own state, in our own city. Just right over there, I could stop on the way home and I'm at one of the best breweries in the country. Cruise right across the river there, you got Flyway on the other side of the river. They're making outstanding beers. Stone's Throw is here and on Little Rock side. Great beers there. Vino’s Brew Pub, which I've been going to since the day I moved here. That's the oldest brewery in Arkansas. They've got a little brewery set up in the back there. One of their calzones in with it and watch a metal band and you got a good night. Now, you may not go to the metal band part, because it's fine.
[00:21:39] KM: That checks all of your boxes. Metal band in the back.
[00:21:43] SP: I can't tell you how many times I've sit in the back at Vino’s drinking craft beer. We didn't have any other breweries in town in ’95.
[00:21:49] KM: The last time I listened to your show, you did not talk about Vino’s hardly at all. I had it on my list of questions. Why are we not talking about Vino’s? The oldest beer –
[00:21:57] SP: Yeah. They’re the OG here.
[00:21:58] KM: What’s OG mean?
[00:21:59] SP: The original gangster. The OBs. Original brewers, I guess. They don't can. Their products are not on the shelves. They don't distribute. Their kegs aren't at other – You can't go into Flying Saucer and get a Vino, or –
[00:22:14] KM: They’re missing the boat.
[00:22:16] SP: They just don't have the capacity to do it. They've got a real tiny little brew base. It's awesome. It's a great little spot. The brewer there is fantastic. He makes really good beers. Yeah, they don't distribute. It's just hard to get their beers. You can only get them at Vino’s.
[00:22:31] KM: Is that smart? If you were going to go into the beer business, don't you want to be able to distribute to have another source of income?
[00:22:38] SP: I think you have your ceiling. Some breweries only want to serve in their tap room only. Some want to have some cans that people can carry out the door. Some want their beer to be on shelves across the state. Some want their beers to be on shelves and tap rolls across the country. I think, everybody can't be that. We have 6,000, 7,000 breweries in America. They all can't take up shelf space in every state. You have these levels. I think to be realistic, you have to go into it, imagining where you want to go. If it takes you farther than that, go for it. If it doesn't, you have to know what your ceiling is. I think for Vino’s capacity, they're doing exactly what they should be doing. You can get a beer to go there. You can take a –
[00:23:21] KM: Growler.
[00:23:22] SP: Growler in. Fill it up. Take it home and drink it.
[00:23:26] KM: A growlers –
[00:23:27] SP: In the state of Arkansas, that's a huge benefit. Because on Sunday, you can't get beer anywhere, except filling growlers, or buying cans at brewery. They've given them breweries a huge benefit on Sunday sales. Except, I guess a couple counties in Arkansas now have Sunday sales. That was the big benefit for them. There was a line out the door at Vino’s on Sundays.
[00:23:45] KM: Getting growlers.
[00:23:46] SP: Yeah. Filling up those growlers. Now, you can do it at all the breweries.
[00:23:49] KM: You can do it all the breweries. Some of you can get cans of beer.
[00:23:53] SP: Yes.
[00:23:53] KM: You just can't buy them in the grocery stores.
[00:23:55] SP: All of our breweries here now can their beers, except for Vino’s. Yeah, so I'm thinking correctly. Two new breweries are just open, or one's opening and one's about to open and they don't can yet.
[00:24:07] KM: All right. This is a great place to take a break. When we come back, we'll continue our conversation with Arkansas beer Ambassador, Mr. Scott Parton. Scott is the author of Arkansas Beer Scene Blog, co-host of Tap Time on 103.7 The Buzz and is well-known by his Twitter handle @WooPigBrewey. Still to come, how to get a beer pedigree? There is a degree in beer brewing you can get and we're going to talk about his radio show, Tap Time; when it is and why you should listen to the show. We'll be back in a minute.
[00:24:40] ANNOUNCER: Flagandbanner.com reminds you, we are just about into the patriotic flag display season. It begins with Memorial Day, continues through 4th of July and then Labor Day. It's a special time at flagandbanner.com. There are resources on our website and our YouTube channel, where you can learn everything from how to mount the flag poles you've been thinking of getting, to flag etiquette and great ideas on how to decorate your home. The resources at the flagandbanner.com YouTube channel are incredible. There's always great advice waiting for you at Flag and Banner in Downtown, Little Rock. The patriotic flag display season. Remember, it starts with Memorial Day.
[00:25:24] KM: You’re listening to Up In your Business with me, Kerry McCoy. I’m speaking today with Mr. Scott Parton, author of his blog, Arkansas Beer Scene, co-host of Tap Time radio show, and podcast, and his well-known Twitter handle is @WooPigBrewey. Not brewery.
[00:25:43] GM: Good job.
[00:25:44] KM: Thank you, honey.
[00:25:44] SP: You nailed it.
[00:25:45] KM: Finally. Had to get corrected at the break. All right, at the break, y'all drank yours and I haven't. This is the one. This is the breakfast beer made out of blueberry.
[00:25:56] SP: Delicious. Blueberry, vanilla, lemon.
[00:25:59] KM: Oh, no, no, no.
[00:26:01] GM: Too much.
[00:26:03] KM: That's not beer.
[00:26:04] SP: It does not taste like – The preconceived notions of flavors of beer have just gone out the window.
[00:26:12] KM: I heard on your Tap Time show on the radio, somebody was making beer out of coconut. I think it was Lost Forty, or maybe it's that guy in Utah Springs. I was like, “No, no, no. You don't like beer out of coconut.”
[00:26:22] SP: Yeah. There are coconut beers, or barrel-aged beers, or wine barrel-aged beers. There's every fruit in the world –
[00:26:27] KM: Oh, he did have a wine-aged, a wine barrel, a beer-aged and a wine barrel. I thought, “Oh, that's smart.”
[00:26:34] SP: The Eureka spring shows. That guy's a fantastic brewer.
[00:26:38] KM: Let's talk about his pedigree.
[00:26:41] SP: Ridiculous. You see, I love these rural breweries, like in Eureka Springs and there's one in Camden. There's one in a little town, Amity, south of hot spring.
[00:26:52] KM: Amity?
[00:26:53] SP: In Amity. I think it's Amity.
[00:26:54] KM: That is the tiniest town.
[00:26:55] SP: Yeah. Well, there's a brewery down there.
[00:26:58] GM: There's one in, The monks at Subiaco do it now in the middle of nowhere in Paris.
[00:27:01] KM: I can see what they do. They’re up there with nothing to do. They walk around in dresses.
[00:27:06] SP: These little rural breweries, you would think, this is a hole in the wall. It's in the middle of nowhere. People flocked to them. People go to them, that brings in tourism. It brings in business. Some of the brewers in some of these places are just outstanding.
[00:27:19] KM: I don’t even think there’s brewery – Have I've seen it right now? I'm confused.
[00:27:22] GM: Brewery. Yeah.
[00:27:23] KM: I don't even think there's a brewery in Hot Springs. Is there?
[00:27:26] SP: Yes. Superior Brewing is downtown there. Then Baba Brews is a little ways out of town. Amity sells their beers there. They're called slight rock. I think they've got their beers all over there, but they're not – Yeah, there's one in a bathhouse there on bathhouse row. It's a perfect place to sit and watch people walk by for hours. They make very good brews and the head brewer down there and her name is Rose. She's outstanding. I highly suggest you stop in there. I think they have a cider too, you might like.
[00:27:53] KM: Do you have a travel log for Arkansas Beer places to travel? Because I thought about that when you were talking about today, about go to Eureka Springs and see this guy. Go out to, who was the other one? The one in Jacksonville.
[00:28:05] SP: Yeah. One of my buddies has a map – a Google map that he keeps up. He keeps it current.
[00:28:10] KM: What’s that called?
[00:28:12] SP: I don't have it off the top of my head.
[00:28:14] KM: You need to put that on one of your many social media platforms.
[00:28:19] SP: It’s hard to keep up with. There's no breweries opening all the time.
[00:28:21] KM: You make any money doing that?
[00:28:24] SP: I might, could, but I'm not. Honestly, I really haven't tried to monetize anything. I don't want people bombarded with ads. I don't want people bombarded with pop-ups and I don't want people to think I'm influenced, because my buddy so and so is paying me X number of dollars to tweet about them more often. Because I don't really need the money. I've got a good job and I like it.
[00:28:45] KM: You just do it, because you love it.
[00:28:47] SP: Yeah, I just love it. I think it helps me stay honest. There's some breweries down the line –
[00:28:52] KM: You get free beer everywhere.
[00:28:53] SP: I don’t talk about them. I don't like them. I don't have anything to do with them. There's some I love, then I talk about all the time. They don't give me a penny. Occasionally, they'll throw some beer at me, because they know I’ll share and talk about them.
[00:29:02] KM: You go in, I know they're giving you free beer though. That's got to be easy on your pocketbook.
[00:29:07] SP: Well, as much beer I drink, that could be $30,000 a year.
[00:29:08] KM: You don’t look like you drink a lot of beer. I just want to tell the listeners. You don't look like you drink a lot of beer. You're not overweight. You don't have a red nose.
[00:29:15] SP: I'm really enjoying this show. I’m going to listen to this show every week.
[00:29:18] KM: I was going to say, because you can't keep a job at Stevens for 25 years, if you come to work drunk, I mean, hung over all the time.
[00:29:25] SP: Yeah. We're at work all the time, too. I'm on call all the time.
[00:29:28] KM: Yeah. I mean, it is the 21st century and everybody on-call all the time.
[00:29:32] SP: Yeah, pretty much. Especially in the last year when we’re working from home, where I've got some work to do and I get home today. I need to finish something up.
[00:29:38] KM: You’re a IT operations. I mean, that is always on-call. If anything goes wrong, I mean, 2:00 in the morning, you're down there, or logging in somewhere.
[00:29:45] SP: Honestly, I feel like I have to be conscious of that. Because what I'm pushing and trying to promote is something that's not good for everyone. I grew up with some alcoholics. I know what that's like. I have to be serious about that. Then there's the drinking and driving. I hate to tell people, go to this event and drink 10 beers. No, I don't want anybody drinking and driving. I don't want anybody abusing it. You got to have control over it. If you don't have control of it, really you shouldn't get into beer.
[00:30:11] KM: You're not a 30 pack a weekend guy.
[00:30:14] SP: No, I like a beer or two a night sometimes. Sometimes I will go a week without having a single beer. Sometimes maybe I have too many beers. Now, taking Uber, but –
[00:30:22] KM: You're not perfect.
[00:30:24] SP: I'm human and I enjoy beer.
[00:30:27] KM: Let's do another one. I don't like that one. I'm not – The blueberry is no good.
[00:30:32] SP: Have you ever had Flyway Bluing?
[00:30:34] KM: No. Who does that one?
[00:30:36] SP: They are a little North Little Rock brewery, just across the river. I know he knows what this one is.
[00:30:42] KM: This is your favorite, Gray?
[00:30:43] GM: They give money to the Audubon Society in support of birds. Therefore, they are my favorite.
[00:30:49] SP: I’m kind of a bird brain, too. I really like birds.
[00:30:52] GM: We have much to talk about.
[00:30:54] SP: That was my passion before I – when I was a kid. We had bird feeders and bird houses. I love birds.
[00:31:00] KM: Gray has a degree in birds. He’s a chicken farmer. Chickens. He has a degree in chickens. He’s a opera-singing chicken farmer.
[00:31:10] GM: Wow. We’re cracking the bird. We're cracking the bird beer. Oh, this is just so into this. This is my favorite episode ever.
[00:31:20] SP: If this isn't the number one selling beer in Arkansas, number one, or two. Easily top three for sure. They've done really well this beer.
[00:31:27] KM: All right. Pass it to your mother.
[00:31:30] SP: I don't know what seltzers have done to this beer. It's a super light beer. Really flavorful for – but I think, maybe seltzers could have cut into the sales of it. I don't know.
[00:31:39] KM: This is really good. It does taste like heartburn in a can to me. That first beer, maybe it's just because it was the first beer. I don't know. Give me some of that first beer. Let me see. I want to compare it.
[00:31:51] SP: I’ll drink my share of this bluing through the years and I plan on drinking more.
[00:31:55] GM: This one tastes very much like blueberry.
[00:31:58] KM: Is this IP?
[00:31:59] SP: No.
[00:32:00] KM: What is an IPA?
[00:32:03] SP: You’re getting into a lot more bitter beers there.
[00:32:05] KM: I think, that’s probably one I like better.
[00:32:07] SP: Really? Okay. I mean, I love the bitter beers. I really love them.
[00:32:12] KM: Would you consider this maple beer a bitter beer?
[00:32:14] SP: No. I would not.
[00:32:16] KM: Yeah. This is really, really good.
[00:32:17] SP: I think that one's pretty smooth. It's got a lot of almost a caramely flavor to it. It's super easy to drink.
[00:32:25] KM: All right, Gray. You can have this one back. This is heartburn in a can for me.
[00:32:28] SP: All right. I see what you lean towards then. I should have brought an IPA. I didn't know if you were a beer drinker at all.
[00:32:35] KM: Did you think, because I’m in good shape, I want it sweet, don’t you?
[00:32:38] SP: No, because –
[00:32:39] KM: Come on. Say it.
[00:32:39] SP: My wife loves IPAs. Well, we used to. This doesn't really happen anymore, because I think that whole stigma of chick beers, they used to call them is out the window. I hope it is. It's offensive and stupid. We used to go –
[00:32:52] KM: I don’t mind. I’m a chick.
[00:32:53] SP: My wife used to pull up to the bar and they say, “What can I get you?” She said, “I'm not sure.” They say, “We got a new fruit something, something.” She's like, “I mean, do you have a double IPA, something?” She doesn't limit herself in that. Your taste buds, typically, women's taste buds are better than men's. I don't know why that is, but she picks out more –
[00:33:08] KM: We smell better.
[00:33:09] SP: That's for sure. She picks out flavors and stuff that I don't get sometimes.
[00:33:16] KM: She’s a little bitty petit thing, too. She drinks beer with you?
[00:33:20] SP: She maybe doesn't keep up with it. Maybe she does sometimes. I play a lot more than her, so I should be able to drink a lot more. She can hold around for sure.
[00:33:29] KM: All right. What's the next one? Then we're going to the gluten-free beers.
[00:33:33] GM: I think that was all of them.
[00:33:35] SP: Yeah. I think so.
[00:33:35] KM: All right. Let's go to a –
[00:33:37] SP: Ciders and seltzers.
[00:33:40] KM: What's your beer scene – while you're cracking this next one, you have quite a following. Why do you think people follow you? Is it because everybody loves beer? Is it because they learned something? Is it because it's educational?
[00:33:50] SP: I wish it was a little of all of those. I think, it's because there was really no concise place to get all the info from all these breweries. Breweries are started by people that love to brew beer, but sometimes aren't the best marketers in the world. Some of them are great. I mean, Lost Forty and Flyway, they do – and Stone, they all do incredible jobs. At the beginning, you couldn't find out what events were where. A bar might be having a tap takeover and you didn't know about it until it was over.
[00:34:17] KM: What's a tap takeover?
[00:34:18] SP: They give a brewery six of their taps and people can come in and try all their beers, maybe at a discount, or maybe samplers. A tap invasion of the wall. Fun stuff like that. We used to not ever know when they were happening. I thought, “Well, I'll just bring it all together.” You come to one place. You come to my Twitter feed, or blog, or whatever. I'm telling you what's going on. I hope that's what got people there was like, we need to know what's happening and no one's telling us. Or you may have to follow 20 other Twitter feeds to find it. I hope you get it in one place now. That's how I started.
[00:34:51] KM: How often do you post on your Twitter feed?
[00:34:53] SP: It depends on what's happening. During this pandemic, there hasn't been much going on. Maybe a few times a day. Or when I travel, I try to post from where I'm at.
[00:35:01] KM: A few times a day is a lot to me.
[00:35:03] SP: Yeah. I think you can overdo it on Twitter. I try not to do that.
[00:35:07] KM: Your blog looks like, it's more monthly.
[00:35:10] SP: The blog has been up and down. There's been times when I posted once a day. Then I might fall into some. There's just not that much going on right now. I mean, most of these places are trying to survive the pandemic and figure out how to get back to normal. There hasn't been a lot of events. They don't want people coming in groups. They may be releasing new beers. Yeah, everything's been slow. I have a feeling we're really about to pick up.
[00:35:33] KM: You are not kidding. You cannot get a hair appointment at the salon. I mean, it's booming. People are dying to get out of the house and do stuff.
[00:35:43] SP: Yeah. I think that's where breweries are sitting right now.
[00:35:45] KM: I think you're right.
[00:35:46] SP: Lost Forty has got a new place they're about to open. They announced it last week, called Camp Taco.
[00:35:53] KM: Where is that?
[00:35:54] SP: It’s going to be where the old Rebel Kettle was, which is just a short distance from their current brewery. It's going to be specialty beers and lagers and tacos. They're going to be getting that going.
[00:36:06] KM: Now, why would you open up another brewery, or another beer place in the same location?
[00:36:10] SP: It's going to be different beers and different menu. It's really two different facilities, just under the same banner. There'll be totally different beers, totally different food, be a totally different vibe, if I know them. They're pretty good at doing that. We have another brewery in Brian that’s going to open in May. They're going to get launched. The one in Jacksonville just opened. They're really trying to get their feet under there. I think, everybody's about to take off. I think it's time to get going again.
[00:36:40] KM: There must be so much business and so much profit in beer or something.
[00:36:46] SP: I think it was done right. Yeah, definitely. I think, you have to have food and you have to have a tap room that people want to come to.
[00:36:52] KM: Isn't the equipment very expensive?
[00:36:55] SP: Yeah. Definitely get really expensive. I mean, both ends of it. You can almost build your own setup.
[00:37:01] KM: Oh, that's what you did when you were doing it in your home.
[00:37:03] SP: Yeah. Yeah. It probably wasn't that good a beer coming out of there. It's probably why I don't have my own brewery. You can also spend a fortune to get really great equipment. Does it make better beer? Sometimes, probably. Yeah, if you got some of the fancier stuff. A lot of the beer making really, I always like to say, it comes from the passion of making beer. Some of these little tiny breweries don't have the fanciest setup, really make cool beers. Sometimes the big ones don’t.
[00:37:29] KM: What about that guy in Eureka Springs? We never did talk about his pedigree.
[00:37:32] SP: He co-owner of a brewery in New York, Empire Brewing. He’s brewed at two, three great places. He went to UC Berkeley, I think, and got a degree in beer making, which is a new thing. I think he studied in Germany, too. The guy, his background is like, what? 20, 30 years of – Well, no wonder. I was saying about rural breweries, you go in some of these and you're like, “Yeah, this is a guy who started like me. Home brewing in the garage and he wanted to open a brewery, which is great.” They make great beers. I love finding those places. I think what's going on your experience, they brought in a world-class brewer, and he's really making just incredible beers.
[00:38:08] KM: He said, he had 29 years experience.
[00:38:11] SP: That's crazy.
[00:38:11] KM: In Germany. Went to school for beer. His first degree was in engineering. His second degree was in beer brewing.
[00:38:21] SP: I can guarantee that engineering degree comes in very handy in brewing, because something's always break. You better have a handyman on site, because it's a lot of mechanical –
[00:38:28] KM: Well, there's all kinds of engineers now. There's mechanical engineers. All right, what are you sipping now?
[00:38:35] SP: Well, we opened the first cider. This is a black apple. Something sweet cider. Not a fan?
[00:38:43] GM: It’s cider.
[00:38:45] KM: I am not going to tell you what that tastes like to me.
[00:38:47] SP: Okay. Now I'm going to try it and tell you what I think it tastes like.
[00:38:50] GM: I like it. It's a little –
[00:38:55] SP: Black Campbell's up in –
[00:38:56] GM: A little musky maybe?
[00:38:58] SP: Where had they started? They were Springdale?
[00:39:00] GM: Yes. They’re in Springdale.
[00:39:01] SP: I’ve been in there.
[00:39:03] KM: Oh, okay. That's Springdale. It tastes fermented. Really fermented.
[00:39:09] GM: Cider. Yeah. Fermented apples.
[00:39:13] SP: It tastes cidery.
[00:39:15] GM: I think, especially after drinking beer.
[00:39:18] SP: I like that.
[00:39:20] KM: You like all beer. You've liked every beer we've opened, haven’t you?
[00:39:22] SP: Yeah. I haven't dumped anything out.
[00:39:24] KM: Well, I'm just too critical, I guess, because I don't drink beer. I’ve got a name beer, so I’m like, “Okay. This is the only one I like to drink.”
[00:39:29] SP: I do say, though, that I’m not a beer reviewer.
[00:39:30] KM: I like that.
[00:39:32] GM: You're the one that’s not supposed to drink beer and you're only drinking beer.
[00:39:33] KM: Is this the maple one?
[00:39:34] GM: Yeah.
[00:39:35] KM: I know. I'm going to break my rules. I'm breaking them all the way. Yeah, give me all that one. Y'all don't need any more of that one.
[00:39:44] GM: I think the show is almost better.
[00:39:45] SP: Check the ABV on this one.
[00:39:47] KM: What's that mean?
[00:39:48] SP: Yeah. Alcohol percentage. No, that's pretty light. 5.1.
[00:39:52] KM: Oh, let me tell you that ciders, that Apple Cider I brought is six something. It's higher than an average beer.
[00:39:58] SP: Ciders typically, yeah, they usually check in a little higher.
[00:40:02] KM: All right, let's do another one. There was one over here that was – Well, that’s the one you brought.
[00:40:06] SP: Pineapple?
[00:40:07] KM: Let's try that one. That's the one you –
[00:40:08] SP: Are you going to try one of the seltzer waters?
[00:40:10] KM: Oh, the seltzer water you brought. Yeah, let's do that.
[00:40:12] SP: All right. Now, those are from Lost Forty.
[00:40:14] KM: Okay. Wow.
[00:40:18] SP: We were talking about the gluten-free stuff and no one in Arkansas makes a gluten-free beer. We just don't have that yet. I wish somebody would, in a way. I mean, I've had good and bad ones. What everybody's decided to do instead was either put a cider on your wall, or put a seltzer water on your wall. Seltzer waters just aren't as sweet as the ciders, which –
[00:40:38] KM: I like that better.
[00:40:39] SP: I don’t like it too sweet. Some of these seltzer waters, I think, are delicious. I drink seltzer water all day, just not the alcoholic version.
[00:40:46] KM: I bet, if you put a little shot of vodka in it, or put it over ice.
[00:40:50] SP: These are great mixers, that's for sure.
[00:40:52] KM: I bet it is.
[00:40:53] SP: They've got four different flavors that they're making now.
[00:40:55] KM: Yeah, let’s say this one.
[00:40:56] GM: Strawberry, blackberry, punchy.
[00:41:00] KM: Delicious.
[00:41:01] GM: She’s not so on seltzer.
[00:41:02] SP: None of their seltzer waters are bad. All four –
[00:41:04] KM: This is delicious.
[00:41:06] SP: To me, that is a summer sitting by the pool.
[00:41:09] KM: What's the alcohol content of this one?
[00:41:12] SP: These can't be more –
[00:41:13] GM: 5%.
[00:41:14] KM: Yeah. What's the alcohol content of hard liquor or something? 12 or something? I don't really know.
[00:41:21] SP: Well, your wines are 12 or 15, I think. When you're talking bourbon, etc, you're in 40% ABV, I think, on that kind of stuff.
[00:41:30] KM: Oh, really?
[00:41:31] SP: Yeah. You should be able to drink a lot more than seltzer.
[00:41:33] KM: That is perfect for sitting by the pool and not getting dehydrated and sipping on something and just feeling lovely.
[00:41:42] SP: Yeah. These are going to be a summer kill.
[00:41:44] KM: Lost Forty. What's that one? What's the name of that one?
[00:41:46] GM: This is Lost Forty, punchy. Not so hard seltzer.
[00:41:51] SP: Well, that one is –
[00:41:52] GM: The strawberry, blackberry.
[00:41:53] SP: They do black cherry. They do a pineapple mango and they do a raspberry lemonade.
[00:41:58] KM: Those are lovely. They're not too sweet.
[00:42:02] SP: Get them in a 12 pack, they put three of each of them in there. You got a mixture for your whole afternoon at the pool right there. I don't think those are – we hadn't even talked about calories yet. I don't know if anybody cares if you're drinking beer. A lot of people don't really care. I do. Some of the beers can get up a 150, 200 calories a can. These seltzers are usually around 195 or a 100. If you want to drink all day and not feel too guilty, it's probably a better way to go with the few sets.
[00:42:27] KM: Because they're mostly just water.
[00:42:29] SP: Yeah, yeah. Really delicious.
[00:42:32] KM: I want to tell everybody that you're listening to Up In your Business with me, Kerry McCoy. I'm speaking today with Mr. Scott Parton, as an Arkansas beer Ambassador, known for his Arkansas Beer Scene Blog, co-hosting Tap Time, Wednesdays at 7 p.m. on 103.7 The Buzz, or for his Woo Pig Brewery tweets. Octoberfest. This is your favorite time of the year.
[00:42:58] SP: I do love Octoberfest. Yeah.
[00:43:00] KM: Is it in Hot Springs in Arkansas? Is Arkansas the place that has the big Octoberfest? Is Hot Springs place in Arkansas that has the big Octoberfest?
[00:43:09] SP: They throw a little festival. Yeah, I think there's several around the state though. I know over in Wine Country over there in western Arkansas, they throw a pretty big deal. The one I go to is here in Little Rock and it's called Little Octoberfest. It's a beer festival. It's been in various places. They've had it at War Memorial, or they've had the pavilion down the river market at one point. It's just a big, fun beer event. That time of the year, I think, is fun.
We're switching over to football season. There's a lot of malty beers coming out, and they call them Octoberfest, or Martin's. You're starting to get close to holiday season, when a lot of holiday type, spicier beers come out. It's just a good time of the year in the beer world. The spring you start falling –
[00:43:54] KM: Spring in summer.
[00:43:57] SP: Yeah. The changing of the season happens not just on the counter. It happens in the beer world, too. Certain types of beers that come out certain times. We were just talking about seltzers. It's great summer beer. I mean, I'm sure a lot of people don't drink that year-round. I just picture myself in the summer hammering the lighter ones you're sitting around. You're going to the lake, or doing whatever. You don't want a 10% big chocolatey barrel-aged beer. You want something light. When the fall gets here, we all turn to the maltier stuff. That's always been a tradition with us.
Then yeah, around Christmas and those times of year, I'm looking for Christmas ales and nutmeg and spicier beers. Then wintertime, stay with big stout and dark beers that you feel like they warm you up. They actually have a style they call winter warmer, which is just heavier, maltier bigger beers. The seasons changed with beer just like they do with everything else. I think it makes it a lot more fun, because you just have so many places to go with beers. I don't mean to be talking bad about wine, but wine is grapes. You've got X number of things you can do. Beer, they've just gone off the rails. They do everything and there's so many flavors match, and so many foods and seasons.
[00:45:07] KM: What did they make all? Is all beer made out of wheat?
[00:45:09] SP: No. Originally –
[00:45:12] KM: Because that's the reason I can't drink it.
[00:45:14] SP: Originally, there were rules and it had to be water, hops, barley and yeast. That was it. That was all you could put in it. It's the barley that you have the problem with. I assume that's what that turns into the actual malts and that's where your gluten comes from. That was for years. They did that. It’s called the German purity law. You have to make it with just these ingredients, so you couldn't do much. Yet, it still varied from place to place, because the water is different.
[00:45:36] KM: What is hops?
[00:45:37] SP: Hops is a plant that's like, you get your bittering from. It keeps it from being too sweet. If you just had malty beers, that would be too sweet.
[00:45:44] KM: It’s the barley that you think is the wheat.
[00:45:47] SP: Yeah. The barley is where your gluten is your problem. Yeah. You can't really make it without.
[00:45:52] KM: Coors used to brag about being from the spring water.
[00:45:56] SP: Yeah, the Rocky Mountain spring water, except a lot of the Coors we drink here was made in Memphis. I don't know how they were telling us they’re getting –
[00:46:02] KM: They don’t have that slogan anymore, I guess.
[00:46:04] SP: I think, they still do have it. I think those were the commercials.
[00:46:07] KM: I think, having a gluten intolerance. I have learned that vodka is no longer made from potatoes. It's made from wheat, except for Tito's and Smirnoff. A lot of hard liquors are now made from wheat, because wheat is so cheap.
[00:46:25] SP: Well, you really got to educate yourself, I guess, to avoid –
[00:46:29] KM: I used to wonder why when I would drink Stolichnaya that I would always just have these horrible hangovers. Now, I’d drink cheap Smirnoff and I'd feel fine. Then when I realized I had a gluten intolerant, I began to look. Those ones with the really expensive labels are all made from wheat. All of them. They're just marketing those like there's some special something and they're not.
[00:46:56] SP: The craft beer world has definitely recognized the gluten-free crowd. I mean, there are options. Like I said, I think most of them returning to the seltzer waters. For one, they sell great. It tastes fantastic.
[00:47:07] KM: When you say wine is only made from grapes, well, beer’s only made from hops and barley. What's the difference?
[00:47:15] SP: Well, it used to be. That was the German purity laws. Then at some point, the Americans especially just threw that book out the window. There's some of the craziest things in beer. You can have peanut butter.
[00:47:27] KM: It’s not really made from that. That's just flavoring, right?
[00:47:30] SP: Yeah. They add it after the –
[00:47:32] KM: They just add flavoring to the hops and barley.
[00:47:35] SP: Yeah. I think in your wine world, where you get all the wonderful flavors from and the differences in them and the nuances is because the grapes are grown in different regions of the world. In brewing, you don't have to do that. You can be in Little Rock, Arkansas, and order all your ingredients from Germany if you want. You can make a beer that tastes more like it's from Germany.
That wine, you really don't do that, I think. You've got a vineyard on site. You grow a certain kind of grapes out of the ground and yours has a specific taste. Now, my taste buds aren't good enough to pick that up, but that's obviously the whole wine world. It's wonderful that you get all these different flavors. In the beer world. You can make any beer from anywhere you’re at. It's not as –
[00:48:13] KM: If you’re in Hot Springs and you're making beer, you get to use the hot springs water?
[00:48:18] SP: She does, I believe. Yes. She does.
[00:48:21] KM: That should make her beer special.
[00:48:23] SP: It is special.
[00:48:23] KM: What's the name of that beer?
[00:48:25] SP: Superior Bathhouse is the name of their brewery.
[00:48:28] KM: It's made with the actual hot springs?
[00:48:32] SP: I'm sure she does. Yes. Also, that's the only brewery in America that's actually in a national park. Their building is in the National Park.
[00:48:41] KM: Well, I think people – you should start writing about trips to take. Because after listening to your show, I was like, “I want to go up to Eureka Springs and go to that guy's place. I want to go – now I want to go to Hot Springs and go to that lady's place, Rose.” I think you should maybe consider doing that.
[00:48:57] SP: I would love to write a travel book.
[00:48:59] KM: A travel book.
[00:48:59] SP: Just only beer. Maybe beer and bourbon.
[00:49:02] KM: Boy, it would be a hit. I can't believe nobody's really done that. Maybe someone has.
[00:49:06] SP: There's a good Arkansas beer book out there. My friend up in Fayetteville wrote it. It's three-years-old now. Wow. Some have closed, and some have don’t.
[00:49:15] KM: Yeah. Don’t write a book.
[00:49:16] SP: I think you have to keep it updated.
[00:49:17] KM: Put it online.
[00:49:18] SP: Yeah. I think something online, just talking about places to go.
[00:49:20] KM: Uh-oh. We’re running out of time. Here's your gift. That's a Missouri flag for the St. Louis Cardinals and Arkansas flag and a US flag desk set, because you're from Arkansas and you love St. Louis Cardinals.
[00:49:32] SP: This is the nicest thing anyone's ever given me on the radio. I didn't know what the Missouri flag look like. I like it.
[00:49:36] KM: Now you do.
[00:49:36] SP: I love it.
[00:49:37] KM: Thank you. I love visiting with you. It's so much fun.
[00:49:40] SP: Thank you for having me on.
[00:49:41] KM: You're welcome. Maybe we'll get back together, talk about beer travel.
[00:49:45] SP: Anytime.
[00:49:46] KM: All right, good. Y'all all listen, what's the name of your show? Tap Time.
[00:49:50] SP: It’s Tap Time on 103.7 The Buzz on Wednesday nights.
[00:49:53] KM: Yes. I love it. In closing to our listeners, thank you for spending time with us. We hope you've heard or learned something that's been inspiring or enlightening, and that it whatever it is will help you up your independence, your life or your business. I'm Kerry McCoy and I'll see you next time on Up In your Business. Until then, be brave and keep it up.
Up In Your Business is a Radio Show by FlagandBanner.com