In April we welcomed Dylan to the team and in May he was joined in the brewery by Glenn Watters. The two of them joining us after long stints in North America. Glenn, who hails from Swords, brings seven years of brewing experience with him from his time in Vancouver.
It all started for Glenn with a stint retail and giving brewery tours in Granville Island Brewery and anyone who has been to Vancouver will be familiar with the brewery. From there he joined 33 Acres where he worked on the bottling line before the head brewer took him under his wing and over five years, worked his way up to be head brewer.
And how did he end up working for us? “I’d just come home in March and my Dad was dropping in the van to Mahony’s (next door to the brewery) and told me there was brewery there. I saw Hope were hiring a senior brewer on LinkedIn and here I am! I started homebrewing about two years before I got into the industry and how that came about was the result of two of the best stouts I’ve ever had: Rasputin Imperial Stout by North Coast and Back Hand of God. After tasting those I wanted to brew my own and went out and got all the books and equipment I needed to get started.
The aforementioned stouts were big influences on my careers and Hamish Clarke at 33 Acres was an impressive and talented brewer and he definitely was the person who had the biggest influence on my careers.”
Have you noticed any difference in Irish craft brewing between when you left and your visits home?
“The industry has grown tremendously. The beer has come on in leaps and bounds and there is some interesting stuff being brewed. The quality of the beers and the size in terms of choice are definitely catching up on West side of North America. It’s saturated over there where breweries are like bars on every corner! I feel breweries, for the most part, not having their own space to serve food and drink makes them not as trendy or popular and places can have their own aesthetics and personality when they do so. In Canada it allows people to take pride in their local brewery.
When it comes to brewing Glenn has a good mix between the old and the new. “I’m very much a traditionalist. Growing up in Europe I loved German beers such as a good Helles. Over in Canada there were a lot of crazy IPAs and I don’t like beers that are too gimmicky. I’m big into barrel programs and love hazy IPAs.”