an adveNture begins...
"Don't play what's there, play what's not there" - Miles Davis
I first learned this quote from fellow craft beer enthusiast and Dogfish Head founder, Sam Calagione, after watching his keynote address at a Brew Bound event a few years ago.
This quote really resonates with me. I can't testify as to precisely what the quote meant to Miles. Maybe he just wanted his musicians to march to the beat of their own drum, be different. Maybe he didn't want them to lose their individuality when performing. Maybe he was trying to inspire everyone to dig deeper, look beyond the surface of what was in front of them and create something truly unique, original, and inspiring. "Don't play what's there, play what's not there". Don't give the people what they already have, give them something they don't have, give them something more. Don't sell your audience short and moreover, don't sell yourself short. Perhaps the phrase, the advice, means all of these things, and that is something I can get behind.
I've had an entrepreneurial spirit my entire life, and my dream has always been to create something great that I could be proud of and an entire community could be proud of. I want to create jobs where people can provide for their families, create a product that people can get excited and passionate about, and create an environment, culture, and mindset that brings happiness and fulfillment to everyone who comes in contact with whatever it is that I am doing.
The dream has always been there, but I am realizing that it is now time to deliver.
But now what? How do I make this dream a reality? What is it that I want to do? I learned that when you are searching for inspiration you start to look towards popular quotes to get your mind going. "It's not knowing what you do, it's doing what you know" is one of those quotes. Or, "do what you love and you will never work a day in your life". What do I love? I love my wife, I love my family and friends, and, I love BEER! So how can I combine my entrepreneurial spirit, passion for creativity, desire to create something truly unique and exciting, while also having it revolve around the love for family, friends, and BEER?! The answer is obvious! By opening a craft brewery! DUH! Why didn't I think of this sooner?!
I have been a craft beer nerd for many years now. It started on a small scale in college, knowing that there had to be more to beer than what the big three yellow fizz factories were peddling to us. In a college town with beer stores having a seriously limited selection, and while also being on a seriously slim college budget, I was the guy trying anything from Labatt Blue to Steel Reserve (just got a lump in my throat). Anything that stood out on the shelves other than the mass commercial-light selections I was all-in on. I wasn't quite drinking the truest of true craft beer or becoming any sort of beer sommelier at this point, but gosh-darn-it I was trying!
As I got older craft beer was making a major comeback, and this is when my passion for beer really took off. Sam Adams introduced me to how great a well crafted lager could be, and Sierra Nevada's Pale Ale made me want to try every pale ale on the market! With these two craft giants keeping the industry alive over the years, they were able to open the doors for other longstanding players to get on more and more shelves as well. Stone, Victory, Troeggs, and the aforementioned Dogfish Head (along with literally hundreds of others) have further fueled my passion for great beer. IPAs, stouts, porters, witbiers, sours, pilsners, the list is endless. There is so much to be excited about in the craft beer world these days, and I am stoked to be a part of it and help it expand even further.
As you could have guessed, my craft beer drinking enthusiasm soon grew into a craft beer brewing fanaticism. Creating a beer from scratch with your own recipe that you can share with the people you know really is a rush. On a larger scale, I honestly can't think of a better way to make a living. And this is how the Gypsy Soul Brewing Company was born.
Why Gypsy Soul? The true meaning of a Gypsy Soul will vastly vary based on the individual providing the definition, and I think that is kind of the point. Every thought or phrase is up for interpretation, and a gypsy soul is no different. There is a popular definition out there on what a gypsy soul is:
"Someone who possesses a gypsy soul is a person always in need of change and/or adventure. A gypsy soul seeks the next best thing in any life situation. They can be very passionate and often inspired by different ideas, attitudes, and experiences. Their sense of identity isn't always sure of what they want out of life but they are determined to find it."
While that is one persons take on what a gypsy soul could be, someone else may believe a gypsy soul can simply refer to someone who needs to roam, wander, explore. Restless. Passionate about being passionate. An individual always wanting more out of life and constantly traveling the globe to find the next great thing. No matter how you want to interpret it, love, life, and travel always seem to be recurring themes when trying to explain it.
To us, a gypsy soul is someone who loves life, loves others, wants to see the world and won't be confined to any one idea of what is great or what is perfect. To us, a gypsy soul can travel anywhere across the globe and treat it like home. To us, it's not about constantly traveling to find something better or something greater, it's about constantly wanting to see great things. It's about exploring something so great in one place that you want to see how great the rest of the world is as well, how great other people can be. A gypsy soul is someone who can love unconditionally, spread infectious joy to everyone around them, and is always in awe of how great life really is, and it is everything we want to be.
This is the identity we want for our brewery. We want to create fantastic beer, beer that is always unique, always complex, and always consistent, but we also want to promote that this awesome industry has thousands of fantastic beers that need to be explored.
Right now our brewery is very young and still in the planning phase. We are looking to plant our roots in our home-state of New Jersey, and I will do my best to keep everyone updated on our progress through this blog. In the meantime, we would love to hear from you! Follow us on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook, and if you have any awesome ideas don't be shy! If you keep your eyes peeled you might even see us at some beer festivals and brewing competitions! We will always keep you updated on what's going on with the brewery.
"Don't always play what's there, play what's not there". This is the goal. Gypsy Soul Brewing is coming, and we are looking to create something great. We invite you to join us.
High quality ingredients, truly diverse and differentiating beers, and absolute consistency. These are the virtues Gypsy Soul Brewing will hang our hats on, and that is a promise I am excited to deliver on. Cheers!