Q. Tell us about your website:
A. We blog about our travels at ServiceDriven.org – I (Sharon) write about our volunteer experiences and share pretty pictures. Jay writes about beer, bikes, and bacon.
Q. What made you decide to hit the road? What are you traveling in?
A. I realized I was spending the healthiest years of my life getting fat in a cubicle instead of having adventures and exploring the world. In January 2011 Jay and I quit our jobs, sold our stuff, gave up our home, and hit the road. We are traveling in a Toyota Rav4 and sleeping either in our tent or at the homes of family and friends. We try to volunteer once a week wherever we are and we visit breweries along the way. So far we have been to 30 states and 3 Canadian provinces.
Q. How long have you been seeking out craft beer when you travel? What was your first craft beer travel memory?
A. For my 25th birthday we decided to follow the central Virginia beer trail. It was one of the best weekend road trips I can remember. After that we planned a weekend road trip to Pottsville, PA to visit the oldest brewery in the U.S., Yeungling.
Q. Where all have you been? What breweries have you visited?
A. I finally tried to write them all down. We have been to 46 breweries in the last 9 months on this trip. Total we have visited at least 55 breweries. Check out this Google Document for the full list.
Q. What do you look for in a beer destination when you travel?
A. We bring our own growler with us, so ideally the brewery will have a sampler and be able to fill growlers that are not their own. We also love to go on brewery tours and really appreciate a story beyond the basics of how beer is made.
Q. How do you find craft beer when you travel?
A. I use google, Yelp, and the Brewery News.
Q. What are some of your favorite breweries that you have visited?
A. Mad Fox (Falls Church, VA), Left Hand (Longmont, CO), Great Divide (Denver, CO), Barrio (Tucson, AZ), Franconia (McKinney, TX), and Muskoka (Bracebridge, Ontario)
Favorite Beer City to travel to:
A. Fort Collins, Colorado – it is bikeable and they even have a bicycle lending library. We visited 3 breweries in one afternoon, New Belgium, Odell, and Fort Collins Brewery, all three were fabulous. (Check out our post about it here)
Best Beer State in your opinion:
A. Colorado – almost every town has a brewery and there are a lot of talented brewers with different approaches to brewing and business.
Brewery you want to visit:
A. There are tons of them! We are particularly excited about brewery hopping in California and Oregon. One of our favorite craft beer makers that we’ve never visited is Stone Brewing in California. I also want to visit Ninkasi and Deschutes in Oregon.
Tell us about your most memorable brewery visit:
A. Lots of people are passionate about beer, but Franconia’s brewer Dennis Wehrmann has an entire family history of it. He takes the time to give a tour every Saturday because he is genuinely excited about sharing his history and love of beer. This tour is simply the most informative. Concise, simple and scientifically accurate answers to anything you ever want to know about beer will be provided. It was also fun that the Saturday we stopped by happened to be a fundraiser for a Greyhound adoption organization, so there were Greyhounds hanging out throughout the brewery and yard.
Q. What is the most unique beer you’ve enjoyed?
A. Recently we toured the New Belgium Brewery in Fort Collins. They are moving into the world of sour beers and we got to taste the Clutch, a dark sour. I tried it once in the tasting room, once on the tour, and then again on tap at a pizza place in Fruita. Each time it was remarkably different. I like it but I wouldn’t want more than one at a time.
Q. Where can we find more about you online?
We really appreciate Sharon and Jay reaching out to us and introducing themselves. Please go check out their blog and read about their volunteer jobs, biking, bacon and beer adventures. They are a truly inspiring couple, lending a hand, so show them some love!!