GRAND RAPIDS — Charlie Papazian. If you homebrew, you know this name. Author of the quintessential “The Complete Joy of Home Brewing,” founder and president of the American Homebrewers Association and all around godfather of the American homebrew scene, MittenBrew caught Charlie right before a book signing to ask some quick questions about Grand Rapids, and AHA’s presence here.
“Michigan has zoomed to the top of the list, so to speak, of states that really embrace craft beer, craft brewing and home brewing. From what I understand it’s a very craft brew friendly state and a homebrew friendly state.
“Grand Rapids deserves the name BeerCity. Everywhere I go people are great, friendly and helpful. There’s a great spirit here and it spills over, the spirit that made [Grand Rapids] BeerCity USA. That enthusiasm and support for local breweries and local beer, you can see it just walking around. There’s a lot of local businesses that have benefited from the community spirit this town tries to foster, it’s pretty cool.
“Having the conference here is, you know, as long as we don’t grow too gigantic and the conference doesn’t grow too huge, having Grand Rapids [host] is a great example of the kind of cities we can go to. Cities that are not necessarily giant metropolitan cities, cities that aren’t on peoples radars that would be great places to have conferences like this. Like Grand Rapids.”
Papazian’s book, “The Complete Joy of Home Brewing,” is available throughout the National Homebrewers Conference, which lasts through today.