Appellation Beer. The current one is the 94th edition, the second one in which I take part after my first contribution just one month ago.
This time the session is on Ding, an English beer blogger who currently lives at the southern part of the US. He recently had an exchange of thoughts on Twitter, after which he pondered and came out with an interesting topic. It has proven to be a good chance for me to do a retrospective exercise and analyse my past and current role in the beer scene during all these years.
In the Spanish version of the blog I've explained several times that it all began in Brussels for me, in 2007. Up to then, I had just been a plain kind-of-above-the-average interested consumer, far from the beer enthusiast that I became after my living in Belgium. After that my interest grew exponentially and I began buying books, drinking the Catalan microbrewed beers that were by that time just appearing, visiting the first beer-related businesses in Barcelona and also reading some beer blogs.
Being already a regular reader of some of those blogs, in late 2010 I registered my present Blogger domain name to write some content and beer experiences "for my eyes only". A couple of months later I contributed to a newly launched digital beer magazine called Gacetilla Cervecera and started publishing public content to Blog Birraire. At this point I was already leading some beer tasting sessions for groups, regularly assisting beer fairs and festivals and visiting the first local microbreweries. It was pleasant, as I was meeting lots of new mates who shared my same hobby. I'm still learning a lot from all the people that I've met thanks to my interest on beer, not only on brewing and beer but also about life in general.
Hobbies are one of the top things in life: it is hence utter nonsense not to get involved and pursue them. Thus I increasingly spent more and more time to create innovative content for my blog, and that's given me the chance to get involved in various projects like becoming the editor of Gacetilla Cervecera; or writing my first book, Catalonia Beer Guide, along with Jordi Expósito. It has also made possible for me to be part of the Barcelona Beer Festival team, as well as lots of other little but gratifying collaborations and experiences.
After all these past years, I consider that my role in the beer scene is exactly the one I was hoping to play when I decided to launch my personal beer blog. My intention was to disseminate what was happening here in Barcelona: this growth in variety and quality of the local beer supply that has led us to a very hopeful and tasty present for us beer lovers. I've been playing my role as a writer, specially from my blog and my coauthored book; as well as an event organiser, with the Barcelona Beer Festival as my main occupation.
To sum up, using the words I've been underlining and formatting in italics, I'd conclude that I'm an interested consumer, a beer enthusiast, a writer and an event organiser. That's kind of what my social profiles state, so I guess that's what my role's about presently. Or, to use Andrew's expression in that tweet that has caused beer bloggers from around the globe to post about this single topic, that's the part of the beer scene that I'm currently inhabiting.
Regarding Ding's question "Are you a wannabe, beer 'professional'?" my answer is that to a certain extent I could say that I am a beer professional. After all I'm earning a little dough from time to time. At least that's what I try to remind / sell to Mrs Birraire whenever she complains because I spend my days drinking beer in the sofa: "I'm working, darling". (A sarcastic face is what follows). But time will tell if my involvement grows, decreases or just stays as it is. Nevertheless, it is always appealing to think of your biggest hobby as a possible future job.
All right then, I guess my reflection on my past and present role in the beer scene is over. It is now time to thank Ding for hosting the present session and wait for the next round, already in 2015. Meanwhile I'll keep on playing my role, with the joy and humbleness of somebody who's in for the fun of it. I will also get involved in as many personal / professional projects -or let's just say beer projects- as I can to satisfy my thirst for new challenges and experiences. Whatever necessary to be happy with the things that I do in my life.
Salut i birra!