Welcome to an ongoing BREWVANA series, Favorite Brewers’ Favorite Brewers. The project is simple: I ask some of the industry’s most notable brewers to share which brewers they most admire and why.
John Laffler. Until recently, he was the guy making oh-so-many cool Goose Island beers even cooler. Now, he’s struck off on his own, working with Dave Bleitner to bring Off Color Brewing to the Chicago beer scene.
BREWVANA: Who is one of your favorite and influential-to-you brewers in the industry and why?
JOHN LAFFLER: Simple—Armand Debelder at Drie Fonteinen. Most of the beer I drink comes from people I know by first name and of everyone I think he best embodies what I love about beer and the people who make it. That there’s this thing that we do and it’s easy to think that we’re very, very clever for it, but it’s important to not forget that our craft is an art that has been passed down from generation to generation for thousands of years. It’s how we learned to survive, to store food, and it’s defined and been defined by culture both high and low. It’s part of something bigger than us, and we need to think about that when we make beer. Art is a response to things poor, nasty, brutish and short. This is ours and Armand taught me it’s important to make something beautiful.
Oh, and also Jeremy Danner at Boulevard because he’s funny on the Internet.