The 902 BrewCast was recently launched by three Halifax beer fans, Kyle Andrus, Phil Church, and Tony Wight. Having enjoyed (and worked in) the NS beer scene, they’ve decided to share their love of the craft with the rest of us. The podcast is a combination of interviews with local breweries, as well as informal tastings and news reporting. Episode 3 of the show, dropping overnight tonight, will be an interview with Halifax’s soon-to-open 2 Crows Brewing; Episode 4, a Holiday Tasting Episode will come out Friday. We tracked down the boys to learn more about them and the podcast.
Can you tell us a little bit about yourselves? How did you get into beer?
Tony: I started getting into beer a bit more when I was still in university at SMU in the mid 00’s – my brother in law would always bring up different bottles from the US whenever he would travel down there, so I always was trying different beer styles you couldn’t necessarily find here. I spent some time working in the industry from a retail side which got me excited about the scene here, and watching it grow has been pretty exciting for a beer fan like myself. Kyle and I have been friends for a while and share a like minded appreciation for craft beer, and I met Phil via Instagram (he takes such great pictures) when he picked up a bottle of Tatamagouche‘s Rum Barrel Aged Dreadnot for me. The three of us got to chatting about beer and I thought the podcast would be a great way to explore our passion for Craft Beer so I pitched the idea to them and here we are.
Kyle: I went to recording school down the hill from Maxwell’s Plum in 2007, so we always wanted to try everything that they had. We eventually made it around, but by doing so, I started to learn and understand more about the different styles and regions, etc. It kinda went downhill from there. It really exploded for me once Stillwell opened, I think. Seeing all that Canada had to offer that wasn’t available at the NSLC. Been great to meet so many like-minded people there and at other events.
Phil:My dad spoon fed me Keith’s and Schooner. Unibroue, Granite and (now-closed) Maritime Beer Co opened my eyes to the world outside of macro lagers (aka, what we were taught/told was beer).
The podcast is focused on having conversations with breweries and brewers about their vision, process, and beer that they put out. We are also hoping to sit down with craft beer focused bar and restaurant owners to see how beer and food are working together to bring a unique experience to their customers. Other than that, we’re also planning on speaking with some other industry related folks – like (hopefully!) Horton Ridge Malt as an example – to get a bit below the surface of the craft beer scene in Atlantic Canada and give others a chance to know the hard working people behind the breweries and their stories.
Will the focus be Nova Scotian breweries, or will others in the region be on the hit list as well?
We’re starting out with Nova Scotia because, at least for the most part, it’s what we know best of the Atlantic Craft Beer scene. Eventually we want to expand beyond NS, we really want to get out to the Fredericton Craft Beer Fest this year and see the best NB has to offer. We’d also love to get the crew from Fredericton’s TrailWay on, and get over to see what they have going on over at Upstreet on PEI – I really like how they’re engaging with the artistic community over there. There’s a lot happening all over Atlantic Canada and we want to see and talk about as much of it as we can.
How often will you be releasing episodes?
We plan on putting an episode out every second Tuesday (#902sday), plus we’ll be doing a monthly tasting episode. I think we’ll also touch on some news during those tasting episodes, but I think we would want the interview episodes to sort of stand alone without coming off as being tied to a specific date or season. After our North Brewing episode, we release one with Good Robot, and after tomorrow’s 2 Crows, we’ve got Spindrift to round out the year (Dec. 27).
Do you have any live or special events planned?
Absolutely! We’d love to be doing some live episodes or doing a Facebook Live kind of thing from different events. Doing something during Fredericton Craft Beer Fest or having a few episodes directed at Nova Scotia Craft Beer Week would be awesome and give us a chance to make some connections.
What are your thoughts on the beer scene in our region?
Kyle: Seems to be blowing up. New breweries opening all over the province every week. I think PEI and NL are still very underserved, but getting there. *Plays “What a Time to Be Alive”* #WATTBA
Tony: There are always new spots popping up, so it’s certainly expanding faster than, I think, a lot of people would have imagined. It’s exciting for me because I am always looking to try something new.
Phil: It’s a great time to be a beer drinker.
Our first couple of episodes are out already (including an Episode 0 Pale Ale Tasting), so check them out however you like to check out podcasts. We had a great time talking with Peter and Josh from North Brewing about all kinds of different things on Episode 1, including that Blood Donair beer with Big Spruce. And of course the fun and almost-about-beer Episode 2 with Good Robot.
Thanks to Kyle, Phil and Tony for taking the time to chat with us. Check out www.902brewcast.com to play the episodes online, or subscribe via iTunes or RSS here. Follow them on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook at @902brewcast to see what they’re working on (right now it’s their Advent Calendar of recommendations). They love to answer questions, talk about the episodes, and listen to others’ experiences with craft beer. You can also check out their personal IG accounts for the latest shots of the beers they’re drinking right now: Kyle, Phil (aka KelticDevil) and Tony. Subscribe today to get the 2 Crows episode in your sleep tonight!