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Who is Scott Kirk?

a group of people sitting at a table in a restaurant

A general rule of thumb in the brewery industry is to separate the brewer from those who drink the beer. This may be surprising and may even sound counterproductive from a marketing perspective since people tend to want to see behind the curtain or feel included in the product they’re consuming. What better way to accomplish that than to peel back the onion and put the genius on display for the whole world to see? 

That may sound like a good idea, but unfortunately, most brewers are psychopaths who have no business interacting with normal people. They work early hours and are fueled by caffeine, alcohol, and malice. They wear beards on their faces as a warning to would-be assailants and want nothing to do with society. In short, the last thing you want is for the brewer to interact directly with the customer.

But at Brew Republic, transparency is the name of the game, and we thought it might be a nice to introduce our loyal citizens to our head brewer, Scott Kirk. Granted, we are using the written word and digital technology to maintain two layers of separation, mostly for your protection. Trust us; this is for everyone’s benefit.

Scott started brewing, as many in the craft beer world, as a home brewer. He had recently separated from the United States Army after a 5-year stint in the Parachute Infantry which saw him jumping out of perfectly good airplanes in Fort Richardson, Alaska, and Thailand. After a layover in Iraq, once Uncle Sugar was done with him, Scott found himself back in Alaska of all places, ready for his next adventure. Homebrewing became a fun post-military hobby, and Scott was happy to keep it that way, but when a head chef at a nearby brewery needed a keg washer, he gave it a try, enjoyed the tough work, and history started writing itself.

That brewery was Glacier Brewhouse in Anchorage, Alaska. Scott worked there for five years, starting out as a keg washer, but moving his way up the food chain until he was Lead Brewer. While in Alaska, Scott never crossed blades with a grizzly bear, but he did have a close encounter with a very recently deposited pile of bear droppings. That was close enough for him. Scott also reports that, unlike former vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin, he was not able to see Russia from his house. She lived in Wasilla, not far from Anchorage, which Scott says is a great enough place, and home of the Iditarod, but Sarah was far more likely to have seen a meth lab out of her window than Russia.

Life was good, but a new opportunity was looming on his horizon.

As it turned out, that horizon was the eastern horizon (or western depending on which direction one flies), in the sub-continent nation of India. In 2017, Scott moved to Bangalore, India to help open and run the brewing operation for The Pump House. It was a big project with a big learning curve, but in the end, he was being paid to do what he loved. Scott got to do collaborations with people from all over the world and use ingredients he'd never heard of. In case you’re curious, the most popular beer styles in India tend to be Belgian witbiers and hefeweizens, mostly owing to the proliferation of Hoegaarden in the country. Scott loved living in India and plans to go back one day.

But after a few years, he needed a breath of American air and returned to the States to continue his brewing career and eventually found his way to Brew Republic.

Scott’s favorite part of being a brewer is the blend between art and science. He also loves the grind, scrubbing, lifting, and all the hard work that goes into creating something great. His proudest moment as a professional brewer was when he brewed his first dark beer and his wife loved it. Scott says she's a dark beer snob and doesn't drink much so when she ordered a second, he was all smiles.

Scott himself is an eclectic beer drinker, and his preferred beer style changes every day sometimes. To him, every style can be as complex as the time you want to put into it. He recently collaborated with Stephen from Maltese Brewing Company in Fredericksburg on a Saison, so that one is currently the freshest in his mind.

His favorite beer at Brew Republic also changes from day to day. Scott tends to drink a lot from the previous batch of whatever he’s working on next to see if he wants to tinker with any aspects of it. Eisbock is the one he is currently happiest with in terms of beers that need tinkering—in Scott’s opinion, it doesn’t. “That one was a pain to make but it turned out dangerously delicious.”

As far as non-Brew Republic beer, Scot can't pick just one. He recently reminisced about the IPA he brewed in India, and even though that's not Brew Republic, it's still his. He also had the opportunity to try some beer from Dynasty Brewing in Ashburn last week and had some really good stuff from them. A few of his packaged favorites include Glacier Brewhouse IPA, Old Rasputin, Anchorage Brewing Company Deal with the Devil, Denali Mother Ale, and Boulevard Tank 7.

In his spare time, Scott likes to watch movies. He just saw the new Batman and wasn’t expecting much, but he was pleasantly surprised that it was really good. Scott’s favorite actor to play the dark knight is Kevin Conroy, and then Keaton. Conroy did it for so long he kind of owns the role. He added that if Pattinson does more and keeps this up, he thinks he might change my mind. He also really enjoyed Boss Level on the Hulu.

Thinking of The Batman, Scott wishes he had planned for this release and made a Pale Ale so he could call it Dance with the Devil in the Pale Moonlight.

We tried to ask Scott some hard questions too, like “If you could be a candy bar, what kind of candy bar would you be and why? He told us that's a weird question. He doesn't want to be a candy bar because that sounds like the hellish existence from that Sausage Party movie. Scott’s favorite candy bar is probably Reese’s Pieces, or anything with chocolate and peanut butter. Perhaps the next Brew Republic dark beer is being born as you read this.

Another head scratcher we asked Scott was, “What is your favorite taco ingredient, and why?” His response: “The sauce or salsa. All of the other ingredients can be super simple, but you can't get away with putting bad pico, salsa, or sauce on them.” Just like his beer, for Scott, it’s all about the flavors.

And now you have a better idea of who the man in the back is—the guy responsible for all the delicious Brew Republic beer you find in your pint glass. In reality, he only looks mad. He’s really as soft and cuddly as that grizzly bear in Alaska who almost killed him that one time. 

To the Republic... cheers!