Late last year, we kicked off a new series of features on The Crafty Pint called Beer Nuts, which shines a light on some of the most colourful beer lovers found in Australia – those that take their passion for the amber nectar above and beyond the normal call of duty.
The launch article featuring Jimmy "A Craft Beer Ideot" from Newcastle and, for number two, we turn to Melbourne and to a man who, once encountered, isn't easily forgotten. His social media name leaves little doubt as to why: Beardface. In a world in which beards are pretty much the norm these days, Scotty's stands out from the crowd, not only because it is so long and bushy but because it has the additional eye-catching bonus of being bright red.
In recent years, Scotty – in the company of girlfriend and fellow beer tragic Meesh – has gone from being a familiar face on one side of the bar at seemingly every other beer event in Melbourne (and often further afield) to being a familiar face on both sides of the bar as he has taken his advocacy for local craft beer beyond the personal and started helping small breweries out at tastings and events. He's also an avid snapper of his boozy adventures, posting pics all over the interwebs, and now here he is as Beer Nut #2.
Name: Scotty Thompson Aka Beardface
Occupation: SCM Coordinator for SAP software (IT & Admin) & slinging beers for craft beer brands in my spare time.
Location: The woods of Melbourne's South East
Are you a nerd, geek, aficionado, snob, wanker or something else?
I have probably been every single one of the above at some point along the journey, but somehow it's turned out that I am now an advocate for nano & micro breweries though the "Social Rep" tag we came up with a few years back. My ramblings are found on my Beard and Beers blog here and on Instagram.
How long have you been afflicted?
Around about four to five years now with the help of some mate's older brothers showing me the reins with Little Creatures and James Squire before moving on to Mountain Goat. And the rest is history...
I remember when I first meet Miro when he used to work at the Belgian Beer Café serving up Saison DuPont, Tripel Karmeliet and Rochefort 10 and telling me about a few crafty venues to visit. I blame him for lighting the fire and the ongoing obsession I have for flavour.
What started you on the slippery slope to craft beer obsession?
Diversity and the chase for something new stemming from learning about the craft beer message, the great social element and the community. I spend a lot of time seeking the new beers out and drinking them promptly of course! That chase for new flavour and experiences keeps me motivated to help out and share the small breweries' dreams and passion – it's all about networking and sharing the experience of someone's creation.
What is the most extreme act of beer obsession you have committed?
You might want to ask Meesh about that! Getting a two week old Pliny sent air freight for my 25th was damn awesome. Also getting a random hoppy beer tattoo recently at Sydney Craft Beer Week courtesy of Cavalier and Young Henrys.
Do you document your consumption? If so, how?
Photos are great way to archive and can become a unique expression of the beers we drink. Also Untappd is a great resource for logging; I have gotten heaps of work colleagues, family and friends on board too.
Which beers have most blown your mind?
I like to call them milestone beers. Tough question. If I cast my mine back, here are a few:
- Brew Dog - Punk IPA
- Bridge Road Brewing - Beechworth Pale Ale
- 8 Wired - iStout
- Epic - Hop Zombie
- Doctor's Orders Brewing - Zephyr / Electrolyte
- Moon Dog - Perverse Sexual Amalgam
- Stillwater Artisanal - Folklore
- Bacchus Brewing - Sex Drugs & Rocky Road
And which have been the worst?
No real comment on specifics for this one. The market is always going to have quality issues no matter the size of the brewery and how the product is handled, stored and also a multitude of supply chain factors. All I can say is research what you are buying – and don't get me started on grey imports again… PS I loathe stale beer.
How many beer t-shirts do you own?
They have accrued overtime so maybe about 15. Not including the one I am wearing now!
How many different types of dedicated beer glassware do you own?
Spiegelau Tulip is the best all-rounder for glassware; it blew my mind doing a comparison from a shaker pint. Their IPA and Stout glasses are also great vessels. Craftd glassware is also solid and back in the day it was ye old faithful White Rabbit glass.
Is any part of your home or workplace a shrine to beer?
Love my photo spot in the backyard and my dedicated level of the cupboard for ageing beers; I have become quite the hoarder of late again. So much beer...
How many unique beers do you reckon you've consumed?
A lot! If I used Untappd constantly over the time I would be hitting upwards of 1800.
How much money do you spend in an average month on beer and related products (not including kebabs)?
So, the budget says $300. Usually I split that up into a case then the rest into specialties. Drink some, keep some, probably go over the budget. You know how it is.
What is your dream beer?
I think we would all have ludicrous ideas floating around in our heads, but here are a few I have thought about of late:
- Eucalyptus Pale Ale: make it inviting at around 4.2 percent. A friend and I have always wanted to use native flora from Australia in a beer, so maybe the next home brew?
- Imperial Vanilla Milk Stout like Southern Tier.
- Also been thinking of a Spiced Saison with cardamom and kaffir lime leaf.
Cheers, Scotty. Hope coming up with replies didn't eat into your consumption and photography too much. See you around the traps at some point.
If you are – or know of – someone who takes the passion for craft beer to the next level, feel free to drop us a line at email@example.com and we may be able to feature them in a future article.
Photo at the Terminus above from the Good Beer Week Opening Party taken by one of the festival's official photographers.