Accelerate Your Brewery

The Brewery Workshop helps brewery entrepreneurs build and grow great businesses. 

Tired of oversized conferences and festivals? There are only 50 spots available for this rare opportunity for new and in-planning breweries to spend multiple days with the best minds in brewing. Move beyond the guesswork and spend four days in San Diego, California, connecting with the experts who have built successful breweries. By learning from the experiences of brewers and owners who have been there before, you’ll save yourself the money and time lost in missteps. At this workshop, we'll navigate the ins and outs of establishing and growing a brewery through hands-on seminars and interactive technical brewery tours where you’ll have the opportunity to engage directly with the pros and your peers. You’ll gain the skills to improve the efficiency of your brewery, create invaluable connections with others in the industry, and accomplish in days what usually would take months. 


The ticket price includes local transportation (airport pickup and trips to breweries), lodging (locals ticket available), meals, seminars, technical brewery tours, lab analysis of your beer ($180 value for Brew2 and Brew4), chance to win yeast and advertising at pitch event ($3,000+ value) and networking events.


The Brewery Workshop will run from March 12-15, 2017, in San Diego, California.



Some of the amazing presenters:


DAY 1 (MARCH 12, 2017)




  • Description: Council's tasting room has been deliberately crafted to create a destination for people from all walks of life to come together, converse, and fellowship over truly fine craft beer. The name "Council" was chosen because it conveys this sense of community; a place where peers come together to deliberate, debate, and make decisions. The tasting room has a warm, inviting feeling, with green, tan, and rustic red toned walls, soft brown flooring and rich Mahogany bar tops. Plenty of seating and low music sound levels promote thoughtful conversations. 
  • Location: Council Brewing


  • Description: How much capital do you need to survive? What’s the best corporate structure to protect you from liability while attracting investors? What are reasonable growth goals for a new brewery? How do you manage cash flow in a new business? What are some of the places to find loans and financing that aren’t immediately apparent? This seminar tackles the nuts and bolts of financing and starting up a new brewery, from partnership structure to attracting investors to managing cash flow over the critical first six months of operation.
  • Instructors: Mary Brettmann, CPA (Beverage Business Builders), Doug Constantiner (CEO/Cofounder, Societe Brewing), Jonathan Dale (Senior VP, Senior Corporate Relationships, Umpqua Bank), Matt Dynice (VP, Bend Commercial Banking Center)
  • Location: Societe Brewing (In The Brewhouse!)


  • Description: Kilowatt Brewing produces unique styled, hand-crafted beer. Creative and interactive lighting permeates throughout the brewery and taprooms featuring rotating artwork created by local artists. Custom programmed LED lighting allows us to change the lighting color and mood in real-time.  
  • Location: Kilowatt Brewing


  • Description: Pitch your business of brewing idea (distribution, taproom, growth, brewery, etc.) in less than 5 minutes to the best minds in brewing to get feedback on your strategy. The winner of the lightning talks will receive a free full-page ad in Craft Beer & Brewing Magazine® ($2,495 value) and a White Labs 10BBL Yeast Pitch.

  • Location: Twisted Taps

  • Presenters:

    • 8:30PM: Caleb P.

    • 8:40PM: Benjamin H.

    • 8:50PM: Jason W. 

    • 9:00PM: Jason P.

    • 9:10PM: Daniel R.

    • 9:20PM: Joseph P.

DAY 2 (MARCH 13, 2017)



  • Description: From building a safe, effective malt workflow to the creative potential of craft malt, we’ll explore this unsexy but vitally important component to craft brewing. 
  • Instructors: Jim Wiggins (Southwest Sales Manager, BSG), Tyler Tucker (R&D Brewer, Coronado Brewing), Carli Smith (La Jolla Head Brewer, Rock Bottom Brewery), Mike Hess (Founder, Mike Hess Brewing)


  • Description: Whether you’re a 1 bbl nano or a 100k bbl regional powerhouse, being able to taste the variety of attributes in your beer is vital to making the consistent and delicious product your customer expects. Additionally, the job of training staff to identify these attributes typically falls to you. This seminar covers the basics of sensory analysis through hands-on tasting, and will give you a fundamental curriculum to train your own staff with.
  • Instructors: Erik Fowler (Education & Engagement Curator, White Labs), George Thornton (Home Beer Co. & The Brewer: Resource Center), Morgan Tenwick (Modern Times)


  • Description: From cell counts to yeast sanitation to propagation and storage, this seminar will present cost-effective strategies for managing yeast to maintain the highest quality standards.
  • Instructors: Ehren Schmidt (Head Brewer, Toolbox Brewing Company), Karen Fortmann (Senior Research Scientist, White Labs)



  • Description: It takes great ingredients to make great beer. This seminar, led by hops experts from well-known breweries and suppliers, will teach you how to identify great hops, handle them correctly in the brewhouse to maintain the highest quality, smell and test hops blends, make smart substitutions in hops as a result of year to year harvest differences or batch variation, and more.
  • Instructors: Patricia Aron (Senior Brewing and Raw Materials Scientist, BSG), Eric March (Star B Ranch & Hop Farm, San Diego Hop Growers Association), Blake Crosby (Crosby Hop Farm)


  • Description:  Fall is a culmination of hungry humans starving for something they can commit to 110% and believe in…without having to answer to anyone.  “We wanted to create a place where we wanted to hang out, drink the beers we wanted to make, and not stuff anyone’s pockets that weren’t deserving of it.  So that’s what we did.” says company mascot and tasting room legend Eggmund. The rest as they say “is history” (in the making).
  • Location: Fall Brewing Company


  • Location: Belching Beaver North Park


  • Description: Pitch your business of brewing idea (distribution, taproom, growth, brewery, etc.) in less than 5 minutes to the best minds in brewing to get feedback on your strategy. The winner of the lightning talks will receive a free full-page ad in Craft Beer & Brewing Magazine® ($2,495 value) and a White Labs 10BBL Yeast Pitch.

  • Location: Twisted Taps
  • Presenters:

    • 8:30PM: Olivier V.

    • 8:40PM: Ryan D.

    • 8:50PM: Gregory F.

    • 9:00PM: Alex M.

    • 9:10PM: Evelyn V.

    • 9:20PM: Bill C.

    • 9:30PM: James E.



DAY 3 (MARCH 14, 2017)



  • Description: Branding is more than just logo design. This seminar will explore the foundations and fundamentals of branding, review case studies of successful small brewery brands, consider authenticity and growth potential in brand development, and help you build a brand framework that you can extend to every consumer touch point.

  • Instructors: Brandon Hernandez (Chief Marketing Officer, Societe Brewing), Jamie Bogner (Chief Content Officer, Craft Beer & Brewing Magazine®)


  • Description: Few startups have the money to defend lawsuits, and this seminar will help you proactively avoid costly legal issues that could delay your growth.
  • Instructors: Candace Moon, Esq. (The Craft Beer Attorney), Dustin Hauck, AIA, NCARB, LEED AP BD+C, CGBP (Hauck Architecture)


  • Description: You may not be able to afford a full-time lab staff, but that doesn’t mean you can’t use techniques that the big guys use—brand standards, sensory panels, and the like—to maintain consistency and meet customer expectations for your products.
  • Instructors: Rick Blankemeier (Director of Brewing Operations, Modern Times Beer), Floris Delée (Principal Consultant and Design Engineer, Kathinka Labs), Lauren Zeidler (Director of Quality, Ballast Point)


  • Description: Every attendee will have the opportunity to send two of their beers to the lab for a analysis prior to the event. Learn about oxygen, ABV, ABW, Real Exract, pH, CO2 Concentration, and a whole lot more from one of the best labs in the country. At the lunch, Floris will discuss the results of the beers, what you should be looking for, and why you care. The analysis done will be one Brew2 and one Brew4 on a beer you send in. 
  • Instructors: Floris Delée (Principal Consultant and Design Engineer, Kathinka Engineering Inc.)


  • Description: Equipment is the single biggest capital cost of building or expanding your brewery. Learn from, then work one on one with experts to help you size, source, and place your equipment for day one and expansion.
  • Instructors: William E. Camacho (Principal, CLTVT), Dustin Hauck, AIA, NCARB, LEED AP BD+C, CGBP (Hauck Architecture), Michael Fabian (Ss Brewtech)


  • Description: Tour Mike Hess Brewing with Mike to learn about how they grew from being San Diego's first nano-brewery to one of its hallmark breweries, now with three locations.
  • Location: Mike Hess Brewing


  • Location: Mike Hess Brewing



DAY 4 (MARCH 15, 2017)


  • Description: While craft beer’s heyday was marked by a “if you package it, they will buy it” mentality, today’s competitive retail market makes selling beer profitably through the retail channel more and more difficult. In this seminar, we’ll discuss common issues such as distributor contracts, format challenges, SKU management, and more.
  • Instructors: Laura Lodge (Author, Distribution Insight for the Craft Brewer), Tannea Musselman (Western Region Sales Manager, Great Divide Brewing Company), Susie Baggs (Founder & Chief Beverage Officer, Brown Bag Beverage, Inc.), Brian Dewey (Sr. Director of Sales, Stone Distributing), Floris Delée (Principal Consultant and Design Engineer, Kathinka Labs), Mike Hess (Founder, Mike Hess Brewing)


  • Description: There are no better margins on your beer than those you get from selling it directly to consumers. This seminar focuses on how to create an environment that maximizes revenue while remaining authentic and on-brand.
  • Instructors: Elizabeth Mandala (Tasting Rooms Manager, Modern Times Beer), Jared Robson (North Park/Ocean Beach Tasting Room Manager, Belching Beaver), Doug Constantiner (CEO/Cofounder, Societe Brewing)


  • Description: So you brew great beer? Do you know what it costs to produce, how to manage/order ingredients, and price for different distribution channels. Join our experts in selecting the best tools, practices, and equations for running a profitable brewery.
  • Instructors: Mary Brettmann, CPA (Beverage Business Builders)



  • Description: Under the direction of visionary brewmaster and co-founder Tomme Arthur, the brewery has garnered dozens of awards in its ten-year history including the 2007 Great American Beer Festival Small Brewery of the Year, The 2008 world Beer Cup Champion Small Brewery and the 2013 Champion Brewery at the San Diego International Beer Festival. The company’s beers, many of which are aged in oak barrels for twelve months or longer, are universally recognized for their complexity, unique flavors, and bold boundary-pushing styles. This will not just be a standard brewery tour. We will talk about the ways Lost Abbey was assembled, operates, grows, and how you can take their lessons learned and apply them to your brewery.
  • Location: The Lost Abbey





Mike Hess is founder and Proprietor of Mike Hess Brewing. A Bay Area native, Mike began his career as a homebrewer in 1995 while stationed in Philadelphia, brewing 5-gallon batches in his apartment’s kitchen from a kit purchased at Home Sweet Homebrew.  When he moved to San Diego, he refined his all grain brewing skills on his hand-built 10 gallon 3-tier gravity system, and later a 20 gallon More Beer system. Like most homebrewers who dream of being a professional brewer, Mike opened up the original Hess to not only to try his hand in the world of craft beer, but also as a concept proof-test of the nano-brewery as a business. It was during this time that he also authored or inspired the content for his widely used blog, the (Mike) Hess Brewing Odyssey.  He designed the original Miramar brewhouse, building it with the help of local fabricators and his brother Greg. He is the company’s CBO (Chief Brewing Officer), working closely with Head Brewer Jason S. on recipes and heads up the QA/QC for the brewery. Mike is the visionary behind our North Park location, wishing to create a unique brewery experience that showcases not just the equipment, but the brewers themselves, as they work to create delicious artisanal beers in full view of their fans and our visitors. Mike is a graduate of the University of Colorado, Boulder – the town in which he fell in love with craft beer, and served as an officer in the US Navy for 10 years.



Ehren Schmidt is the Head Brewer, Blender, Yeast Scientist and Member at Toolbox Brewing Company. He studied Geological Sciences with an emphasis in Geomicrobiology at The University of Missouri-Columbia. He passion for beer and background in microbiology led him into the brewing industry where he has become an authority on wild yeast and bacteria isolation, characterization, and implementation. Toolbox has won a variety of awards for Ehren’s creations, including a bronze in the Wood and Barrel Aged Sour Beer category at the 2016 World Beer Cup. Ehren is currently working with the San Diego company Encinitas Brewing Science to capture, isolate, sequence and map brewing suitable microflora native to San Diego County. 


Doug Constantiner began homebrewing in 2005 and moved into professional brewing in 2009.  Before starting Societe Brewing Company, he worked as a brewer for The Bruery (Placentia, CA) and had short stints at Oggi's Pizza and Brewing Co. and Green Flash Brewing Co.  Doug opened Societe Brewing Company in 2012 with his business partner, Travis Smith.  Currently, Doug serves as the CEO for Societe, which will produce 5,000bbl of draft-only, San Diego-only beer in 2017.  Societe operates out of a centrally located, single location in the Kearny Mesa area of San Diego.

A native San Diegan, Tomme returned home to San Diego in 1995 after earning his Bachelor of Arts in English from Northern Arizona University where he cultivated his passion for brewing. In March of 1996, he began his professional brewing career at the now defunct Cervecerias La Cruda (The Hangover Brewery) in downtown San Diego. Cervecerias La Cruda earned a Gold Medal at the 1996 Great American Beer Festival and at that point it was only the second Gold Medal earned at this prestigious competition by a San Diego brewery.


After La Cruda closed it doors in March of 1997, Tomme went to work for White Labs in San Diego. Working with Chris and Lisa White, Tomme spent his days selling yeast and developing product as he waited patiently for the right brewing job to become available. In May of 1997 he was hired by Pizza Port in Solana Beach where he remained the Head Brewer until June of 2005 when he was named Director of Brewery Operations for Pizza Port. 


During the 8 plus years that Tomme was Head Brewer in Solana Beach, the brewery won 13 Great American Beer Festival Medals, numerous medals at the Chicago Real Ale Festival as well as other regional and national competitions. In 2003 and 2004 Pizza Port Solana Beach was named Small Brewpub of the Year. Tomme was also named Small Brewpub Brewer of the year for both years.


After joining Port Brewing in 2006, Tomme kept up his winning ways. In 2007 Port Brewing was named Great American Beer Festival Small Brewery of the Year, and Tomme Small Brewer of the Year. In 2008 he and Port Brewing were named World Champion Small Brewer and Brewery at the international World Beer Cup. Since then he’s taken home a raft of medals and been consistently noted as one of the world’s top brewers.


Elizabeth Lay Mandala is a Certified Cicerone (R) and the Tasting Rooms Manager for Modern Times Beer (Lomaland Fermentorium, North Park Flavordome). Originally from Mississippi, Elizabeth developed a love of craft beer in Boston where she worked at the region's premier establishments including Cambridge Brewing Company, Lord Hobo, & Craft Beer Cellar. Her desert island beers are Westbrook Gose (German-style sour beer brewed with salt), Orval, (Belgian Trappist Ale with Brettanomyces yeast), and Modern Times' own Fortunate Islands. She recommends pairing Fortunate Islands with spicy fish tacos for SoCal flavor explosion. When she's not nerding out about beer history or crafting, Elizabeth is snuggling her new puppy, Prince Butthead, whom everyone refers to as "Buddy." 


Pattie Aron obtained a B.S. in Biochemistry from Elmira College and both her M.S. and Ph.D degrees in Food Science and Technology from Oregon State University. Pattie’s passion for fermentation led her to conduct graduate research in wine chemistry and brewing science. From 2011- 2017 Pattie was the Senior Hop Chemist in the Applied Brewing and Research team at MillerCoors. In this role she researched and innovated hopping products and technology, directed brewing trials related to hop variety development, and developed a hop sensory program.  Her research also focused on off flavor troubleshooting as well as beer flavor and flavor stability pertaining to hops and other raw materials.  In her current role, Pattie is the Senior Brewing and Raw Materials Scientist for Rahr Malting.  She currently conducts research and development and manages the technical research and brewing laboratories in the Brewing Research and Innovation group at the Shakopee, MN headquarters.


Jim Wiggins is the Southwest Regional Sales Manager for Brewers Supply Group (BSG). In his role, he helps local breweries source ingredients, discover new ingredients, plan for future needs and provides technical support for any ingredient related issues that may arise. In the 6+ years that Jim has been with BSG, he has helped breweries of all sizes all over the country navigate ingredient and supply procurement.  

From the moment that he could legally drink beer *wink, wink*, Jim was seeking out and learning about any craft beer he could find. That love of craft beer eventually evolved into a passion for homebrewing. As a former member of Crown of the Valley Brewing Society, he was inspired by the dedicated homebrewers in the club that were actually making careers out of beer. After doing some research, Jim learned about BSG, an ingredients supplier in his home state of Minnesota. BSG distributed a lot of the malts that he liked to brew with and that he had seen while visiting some of his favorite breweries. He quickly realized that the only thing that would be better than working with one brewery would be to work with them all!


Better known as “Ray” around the neighborhood, he has been making beer since he could legally vote.  After numerous homebrewing awards, he made  his way to the big leagues and has been brewing with the best of them since 2007 when he won 2 medals at GABF with his first entries.Fast-forward to the present, and he is still striving to make delicious classic beers; including lagers which are scarce in San Diego.  One who is always working in the brewhouse, yet never busy enough to turn down a conversation, stop by and say hello to The Captain.


Prior to working in the brewing industry, Rick was a process development engineer for a few petrochemical companies.  Wanting to work in a place with tastier beverage options, Rick started working at Stone Brewing in 2010.  While working there as the QA Manager, he helped establish the quality systems and procedures for brewing and packaging quality in the Escondido and Richmond locations. He has given presentations and seminars on brewing and packaging quality assurance practices at Master Brewers Association of the Americas annual meetings and Craft Brewers Conferences. Rick holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in chemical engineering from the University of Colorado at Boulder. He currently is the Director of Brewing Operations at Modern Times Beer and the President of the Southern California MBAA District.


Lauren Zeidler joined Ballast Point in 2012 and has been fortunate enough to grow with the company alongside a stellar team since then.  Now Director of Quality, she is oversees all operations within Ballast’s multiple labs and Field Quality team; she also gets to be continually amazed by what yeast can do to create interesting, complex beers.  Prior to entering the craft beer scene, she studied Evolution and Gender & Women’s studies at UC Berkeley.  Lauren is passionate about Quality in the brewing industry and loves to talk with people about it.  She enjoys trying new beers, travel, being a nerd, and trying new things.


Carli Smith Head Brewer for Rock Bottom Restaurant and Brewery La Jolla since January 2015. Born and raised in San Diego, Carli started working in the craft beer industry at 16 as a hostess at Callahan's in Mira Mesa. Carli attended University of San Diego and got her Bachelors of Business Administration in Finance. While attending USD she worked at Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurant in Mission Valley, starting as a hostess and then progressing through many jobs finally becoming an unofficial brewing assistant. Carli studied abroad in Vienna and Salzburg Austria where she fell in love with craft beer. She was interested in how the different ancient breweries had lasted for hundreds of years and continued to thrive as breweries around them became increasingly more modernized. She was also intrigued when their differences played off each other and seemed to coexist flawlessly. After returning to the US and graduating Carli became the official Assistant Brewer to Douglas Hasker. Carli worked with Doug until October 2013 when she left Gordon Biersch to work with Marty Mendiola at Rock Bottom Restaurant and Brewery La Jolla. She worked with Marty for 2 years before he left to open Second Chance Beer Co. and she was promoted to Head Brewer. Carli enjoys making balanced clean beers that are palatable to a variety of tastes. She prides herself on having a brew for every person on her beer list. 


As Chief Marketing Officer for San Diego-based Societe Brewing, Hernández is responsible for the company's social media, graphic design, copy-writing, marketing communications, public relations, brand development and more. A marketing professional of 20 years, he previously worked as Marketing Manager for AleSmith Brewing and Senior Communications Specialist for Stone Brewing. In the latter role, Hernández grew the company's social-media audience into the most-engaged of any brewery in the world and was integrally involved with numerous marketing campaigns including Stone Groundbreaking Collaborations, the most lucrative brewery crowdfunding campaign in Indiegogo history at the time of its conclusion. In addition to his role at Societe, Hernández is a freelance journalist focusing primarily on craft beer and the brewing industry. He is Editor at Large for San Diego-based West Coaster Magazine, the San Diego columnist for Celebrator Beer News, an on-air beer correspondent for CW6 San Diego, and has had his work featured in USA TODAY, All About Beer, ImbibeThe San Diego Union-Tribune, San Diego Magazine, Pacific San Diego Magazine, San Diego Reader, Beer Paper LA, and numerous other publications and online outlets. He is a member of the California Craft Brewers Association's Social Media Advisory Committee, the author of San Diego Beer News: Complete Guide to San Diego Breweries as well as the founder of the Beer to the Rescue charity campaign benefiting the Lupus Foundation of Southern California.


Curtis and Liz opened Council in May 2014, as a small batch brewery, located in the Kearny Mesa area of San Diego. They place a tremendous emphasis on creating exemplary beer, crafted to the highest standards. They brew beers that are unique and extremely flavorful, focusing on Ales hailing from American, Belgian, and English origins with an emphasis on San Diego's interpretation of West Coast IPA's and Sour Beers. No matter what the style, we focus on creating intense aromas and flavors that are very well balanced and drinkable.


Michael Fabian joined Ss Brewing Technologies in its formative days as an owner of the Company and now holds the position of Chief Commercial Officer.  Michael handles BizDev on both the Nano and Pro segments, as well as key roles in commercial strategy, product development, and technical oversight.  Mr. Fabian has worked closely with many leading breweries and brewers on equipment selection, design, layout, operation, and support and he plays an instrumental role in the management and implementation of new brewing sytems for all of Ss Brewtech’s projects.


Tyler started home brewing in 2008 and quickly fell in love with the process, started reading everything he could get his hands on and shortly thereafter started dropping off resumes and bottle samples. After about 2 years of pursuing the brewing world, he got a chance to work with Travis Smith at a brewpub that is no longer in operation. After a very short 2 months, Travis left and Tyler was back looking for work. I quickly found a spot at Mission Brewing doing grunt work; cleaning, kegging, milling, cleaning kegs and bottling. Roughly 6 months later, he moved over to Manzanita Brewing where he started by cleaning kegs, CIPing tanks, carbing and kegging beer. Tyler quickly moved to brewing and started working 6 days a week brewing and do anything needed. After about 6 months he got a job with Societe Brewing Company at the end stages of their build out. Tyler then left for Siebel Institute in February 2012 and return to San Diego in March after completing my Associates Degree in Brewing Sciences. He started at Societe as the Assistant Brewer to Travis and Doug and quickly became the Brewer along with Travis working closely to develop the core beer and the brand. He brewed over 700 batches and enjoyed over 4 years with them before taking on my current position as the Research and Development Brewer for Coronado Brewing Company and Head Brewer of the pub location. As the R&D Brewer he gets to choose the malts that he brews with and sourcing the best malts for the beers that he's brewing. Tyler feels that malt has as important of role in beer as the hops do.


Tannea Musselman is a transplanted Coloradan that has been with Great Divide Brewing Co. since 2010. Equipped with a BA in Science Culinary Nutrition from Johnson & Wales University in Denver, her knowledge of the food industry & background in science made for a natural fit in the craft beer world. Tannea is also a Cicerone Certified Beer Server, working to achieve level 2. 

 She initially started in the tap room of Great Divide giving tours, from there she transitioned into a sales role covering Downtown Denver & beyond. 

Tannea was the first out of state Regional Representative for Great Divide. She currently manages distribution & sales in Southern California, Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Arizona & Maui. Since taking over the Western Region she has doubled Great Divide sales. 

When not working, Tannea enjoys traveling, sailing San Diego Bay with her boyfriend, and going to the beach with her dog Lexi. 


Eric March is the Foreman for the Star B Bison Ranch & Hop Farm, a 1270 acre Bison Ranch with 2 acres of hops in production and 1 acre expansion coming this year.  Star B has been growing hops commercially for 7 years in eastern San Diego county. Eric is the Co-founder of the San Diego Hop Growers Association, the Southern California Representative for the USAHops Small Grower Council, and is Vice-President of the new California Hop Growers Association. In addition to his responsibilities at the ranch and involvement with hop growing, Eric is a Homebrewer and Beer Enthusiast.



George Thornton is the co-founder of The Homebrewer, a supply store and resource center for homebrewers (2012), and Home Brewing Co. (2014), a craft brewery and tasting room.


George began brewing beer as a hobby in 2002, at the behest of his older sister. The path from hobby to career began in grad school, while working at a local supply store.


George is an instructor for the SDSU Business of Craft Beer Certificate Program, a Certified Cicerone® and a Certified Beer Judge.


He has a BA in History from UCSD, and a MA in History from SDSU. 


Jonathan Dale (“JD”) is a 3rd generation native of San Diego, and has enjoyed watching his town grow into a well-diversified, forward-thinking, innovative business community. His 20-year banking career has been centered in structuring customized financing and cash-cycle management solutions for growing middle-market companies – with a niche in Food & Beverage and Craft Beer. JD is not too keen on collecting fancy material possessions, but is passionate about good food, good beer, travel, and enjoying life with good people. The prides of his life are his wife Adrienne, and two girls – Arya (5) and Meadow (3). If JD is not working, he is likely enjoying time with his family somewhere outside, travelling to a forest somewhere, golfing, or having a cigar with his friends. JD will earn his MBA from the USC Marshall School of Business in May 2017, with an emphasis on executive leadership.


JD is currently a SVP and Sr. Corporate Banker at Umpqua Bank. He and his team have provided over $50 million in financing to craft breweries since 2010, and were amongst the first banks to provide conventional financing to craft breweries dating back to 1999. His team consults on growth strategies, efficiency solutions, state-of-the-market observations, and competitive advantages. While he failed at making great beer himself as a hobbyist, he is honored to have provided debt-capital to some of the best ale-artisans in the world – who just so happened to have shaped and led the Craft Beer industry from his own home town.


His professional mantra is “matter”... meaning, when one is providing a service or advice, it should be Meaningful, Accurate, Thoughtful, Thorough, Eloquent, and Reliable.


With over twenty years experience in the profession, T. Dustin Hauck has participated in all aspects of architectural practice. As principal of the firm, Mr. Hauck is the driving force behind all of the firm’s projects and designs, responsible for project management and document production. His combination of thorough analysis, client considerations, and attention to detail constitute the foundation of Hauck Architecture’s approach to every project. Since their first brewery project for San Diego's 71st brewery, Benchmark Brewing Co. in 2012, Hauck Architecture has established themselves as the go-to architectural firm for breweries, working with over 75 craft breweries to date. Mr. Hauck, an avid home brewer and craft beer enthusiast, possesses the skill, experience, passion and reputation for planning and executing a successful project, while coordinating with all engineering consultants, contractors and governmental authorities.



Karen received both her Masters and Doctor of Philosophy in Biochemistry from University of California, San Diego. During her graduate studies, she worked on characterizing the functional and molecular traits of a degron in IκBα, the inhibitor of the transcription factor NFκB, in the laboratory of Dr. Alexander Hoffmann. Rather than going the traditional biotechnology route she decided to explore fermentation sciences and in July 2014, she became the first Postdoctoral Research Scientist at White Labs, Inc, a yeast manufacturing company in San Diego, CA. Her postdoctoral studies focused on the various “omics” of fermentation as well as internal applied sciences. In January of 2016, she was hired on as a Senior Research Scientist with White Labs. In her new position, she is continuing her postdoctoral studies and manages the Cell Biology Lab.


Floris started his career in brewing as an intern at the Alken Maes Breweries in Waarloos, Belgium. During this time, he was also studying to become a Brewmaster and Brewing Engineer in his hometown of Antwerp, Belgium. After completion of his studies, he traveled to the U.S. to visit friends, when he was offered a brewing position at New Belgium Brewing Company. At the time, New Belgium was a very small craft brewery, producing 3,000 hl of beer/year. He eventually became Technical Director at New Belgium. Floris also worked as a Brewmaster for Dogfish Head Brewery in Delaware and as a Brewing Engineer for the Anton Steinecker Maschinenfabrik, GmbH in Freising, Germany. This extensive experience led Floris to open his own design and consulting firm, Kathinka Engineering, based in Fort Collins, Colorado. He also teaches at Colorado State University's Fermentation Science and Technology Program. Floris is married to Christine Perich and they live with their children in Fort Collins, Colorado. 


Erik joined White Labs in 2014. Before working with the fermentation company, he worked for a prominent international beer company, a San Diego-based nano-brewery and several beer and wine centric retail outlets. For more than four years, Erik has led beverage education classes on sensory evaluation, history, pairings and proper serving techniques. He is Cicerone® Certified and holds a Business of Craft Beer Certificate from San Diego State University Extended Studies. Through his various endeavors, Erik use his knowledge and expertise to make fermentation and service education informative, accessible and engaging to professionals and hobbyists alike.


Candace L. Moon discovered the need for specialized craft beer counsel while working as a bartender at Hamilton’s during law school. While she met countless brewers, there were no attorneys catering to the legally complicated industry. Accordingly, Candace opened a practice serving San Diego’s suds. She has since worked with over 200 craft breweries and craft breweries-in-planning nationwide, handling business entity formation, alcoholic beverage law, contract review, trademark law, as well as other legal needs. Candace’s undergraduate degree is from the University of Virginia and her juris doctorate is from Thomas Jefferson School of Law in San Diego, Calif.


As president of Beverage Business Builders, Mary Brettmann is helping companies grow to the next level. She has 30+ years of experience in the corporate world.  In that journey, she has been a state auditor, a sales controller, an international treasury professional, a business owner and finally a craft brewing CFO for a fast growing regional craft brewery.  She has six years of experience in the craft brewing industry, including two years as a CFO for a regional craft brewery and four years as a business consultant.



William Camacho has been servicing the technical construction market prevalent in the Southern California arena for the past 15+ years. William’s main focus has been Brewery, Distillery, and Life Science markets. Prior to founding CLTVT, William had been an integral part of Serbia Consulting Group, a Corporate Real Estate Consulting firm servicing technical clients in owner's representation, pre-construction planning and construction management. With a foundation of experience stemming from 6 years in the Naval Nuclear Power program and 12 years on facility planning, facility management, procuring institutional and private financial vehicles, site and tenant improvement pre-construction planning, authoring regulatory protocol compliance documents for cGMP Biotech Manufacturing facilities, plus 10 years of craft brewery production efficiency optimization, planning, procuring, and commissioning, William has been directing and managing the process from concept to completion for technical and production Companies, establishing a reputation of solid work ethic and smart project management reliability.


Jamie’s focus is on content and product, developing big picture vision while serving as Editorial and Creative Director for Craft Beer & Brewing Magazine®, working with creative contributors (writers, editors, photographers, illustrators, videographers) across media. He’s served in roles as diverse as Art Director, Editorial Director, VP of Content, and VP/Group Publisher for a variety of media companies, and is equally at home evaluating P&L’s or designing magazine pages.


Laura Lodge learned about the distribution tier working with a small, independent distribution company in the mountains of Colorado. Job? Everything, including entering orders, loading/routing trucks, delivering product, all aspects of accounting and managing the office, and more. She shares her experience to benefit the artisanal/craft business owner in Distribution Insight for the Craft Brewer, designed specifically for the brewer learning about distribution.


Lodge consults with brewers and distributors as an element of her consulting business, Customized Craft Beer Programs, and is also the coordinator of the well-known Big Beers, Belgians & Barleywines Festival held in the mountains of Colorado each year. She consults for the resort industry with regard to craft beer integration with food & beverage programs, including clients such as the Vail Cascade Resort, Gateway Canyons Resort, and Beaver Run Resort.


Creating and assisting with craft beer events is another facet of her business, including working with Craft Beer & Brewing Magazine to create their Brewers Retreats, with Destination Services of Colorado for client events, with Brush Creek Ranch & Spa for their guests, and with the Brewers Association for both SAVOR: An American Craft Beer & Food Experience and the Great American Beer Festival Paired Pavilion.


Laura lives in Vail, Colorado and enjoys the outdoor lifestyle of the mountains.


Jared is a 15+ year veteran of the customer service/hospitality industry, with over 10 years in management. He transitioned to the beer industry over 3 years ago, and has gone from bartender to General Manager of two tasting rooms. Jared is a graduate of the SDSU Business of Craft Beer Program, and is a level 1 Cicerone, with plans to sit for the Level 2 exam in September.



Brian has been in the craft beer business for 15 years, and is currently the Sr. Director of Sales at Stone Distributing. He has previously been the Director of National Accounts for Stone, Vice President of Sales at Golden Road Brewing, and the Regional Sales Manager for Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. He lives in Pasadena, CA.



Matt Dynice has over 10 years’ experience as Vice President, Commercial Relationship Manager with the World’s Greatest Bank, Umpqua Bank.  He’s responsible for managing the lending and depository relationships for commercial banking customers in the Central Oregon area. 


Matt moved to Bend, OR in the early 90’s from Southern California and fell in love with the outdoor recreational activities and craft beer the area had to offer.  After graduating from Linfield College with a Bachelor of Science in Business, Information Systems, Matt decided to permanently call Bend, OR his home so he can be close to family.   


Matt has over 3 years’ experience working with local/regional breweries in Oregon that are 5-7 years old and are moving into the next growth phase of their company which includes increasing capacity and expanding distribution.  


He’s a firm believer in giving back to the community by serving as a volunteer board member for Deschutes Children’s Foundation and participating in Umpqua Bank's Connect program, which provides associates with 40 hours per year to spend volunteering with nonprofit organizations during business hours. 


During his free time, he enjoys traveling with his wife, snowboarding, live music and visiting craft breweries around the country. 


Blake Crosby is the CEO of Crosby Hop Farm and represents the fifth generation of the Crosby hop family. Blake's early experience in the hop yards while learning the hop trade grew into expanding the family business whose products now fulfill craft brewers' hop needs around the world. Blake is very active in the industry, serving as both a commissioner for the Oregon Hop Commission and a director for the Hop Growers of America. He is a graduate of the University of Oregon and holds an MBA from Willamette University.


Susie Baggs founded Brown Bag Beverage with a passion for customer service and craft beer and the desire to shake up the craft beer distribution segment in San Diego.  Her passion for craft beer started long before while she was in college, but her focus on distribution came after a stint in the restaurant industry. 


In 2010, Susie started an adventure that would take over her days and nights for 2 ½ years… Susie and a friend opened a restaurant in Hillcrest, San Diego. During these years, in addition to all the hard work, Susie learned a ton about hospitality and the food and beverage industry. It was here that it became apparent that customer service in the beer distribution channels was hard to come by if not totally non-existent. Once Susie decided to sell her half of the restaurant, it was clear that she needed to find a way to fill this gap. California has close to 400 craft breweries, and Susie is confident that many of them are as passionate about great service as they are about craft beer. Susie created Brown Bag Beverage in 2013 to guarantee quality throughout the entire process… from Malting to Drinking.


With more than 100 breweries, San Diego is one of the top beer cities in the world. From national favorites Stone, Lost Abbey, and Ballast Point to lesser known but still delicious Toolbox, Belching Beaver, and Societe breweries, there is something for any beer lover. What better place to collaborate with some of the best minds in brewing than the hot spot that is San Diego.


For 'Solo Room' ticket holders, you will be staying in the newly redesigned Lafayette Hotel in San Diego:




In 2004, BSG recognized that the craft brewing and homebrewing community needed a dependable source for diverse ingredients from around the world. Since then, we have earned the trust of our customers by delivering the finest brewing ingredients at competitive values, all backed by outstanding customer service and depth of industry experience.

We continue to search the globe for new and interesting brewing ingredients that we can bring to our customers. Consequently, our product list continues to grow as we strive to better meet the needs of both professional brewers and homebrewers. Additionally, our knowledgeable and friendly sales and management staff comes from the professional brewing & homebrewing communities, so we can assist you in everything from recipe formulation to troubleshooting.

Whether it's exclusive specialty malts, in-demand hop varieties, or premium brewing aids we have you covered; great beers are made from select ingredients. BSG is committed to being your partner, and shares your passion for creating outstanding beers.


Ruby Street Brewing, LLC specializes in building top quality all grain beer brewing systems and equipment. Ultimate home brewery, pilot brewery, or nano brewery, we have brewing equipment to meet your needs. Short lead times, innovative products, and outstanding customer service make Ruby Street Brewing your best option for professional grade equipment.


At Ss Brewtech, we are all about innovation, usable features, quality, affordable prices, and top-notch customer service. We have only just begun to fundamentally change the landscape of brewing equipment for the better. We launched our business in 2013 with the Brew Bucket-—the world’s first conical-bottomed stackable stainless steel fermenting bucket. We followed this up with a solid line-up of conical fermentors ranging from 7 gallons to the ever-popular half barrel. Then came the world’s first homebrewing kettles with a built-in trub dam. And then the world’s first fully integrated homebrewing temperature control add-on system with immersion chiller coils, digital controller, and custom-tailored neoprene insulating jackets. Then we launched the world’s first all stainless infusion mash tun with a pro-style 5° sloped floor, center drain, silicone gasket seal for the false bottom, and digital thermometer. As we look toward 2016 and beyond, we plan take our business beyond home-scale gear to nano and commercial-size systems.


Kathinka Labs is a TTB certified lab offering high-quality, accurate, and precise lab analysis for craft brewers to help ensure you are consistently producing the best beer for your customers. Our staff of lab professionals, brewers, and consultants have many years combined experience in both craft brewing and big beer. We perform tests according to industry standards and our staff are proud members of the American Society of Brewing Chemists (ASBC), the Brewers

Association (BA), the Institute of Brewing & Distilling (IBD), and the Master Brewers Association of the Americas (MBAA). To learn more please visit


Kathinka Labs is the brainchild of Belgian Brewmaster Floris Delée, principal of Kathinka Engineering. As consultants for the brewing, malting, kombucha, and distilling industry, Kathinka Engineering designs sustainable, innovative breweries and brewing processes that allow owners and brewers to make the best beers possible based on European traditions and technology mixed with the inspiration and energy of the fast growing U.S. craft brewing industry. The Kathinka team, led by Floris, consults and designs for breweries throughout the Caribbean, North and Central America, and Belgium. Recent Kathinka projects include the new Avery brewery in Boulder, Colorado, the second New Belgium brewery in Asheville, North Carolina, the new Russian River brewery in Windsor, California, and the Karbach Brewery in Houston, Texas. To learn more about Kathinka Engineering please visit 


Craft Beer & Brewing Magazine is the magazine for those who make and drink great beer. We are committed to providing exceptional content to the craft-beer community. From the latest recipes, tips and techniques, features on beer styles, interviews with top brewers, beer reviews, and industry perspectives, we are the resource for all that is craft beer. 


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

How many tickets are available to purchase?
The retreat will have no more than 50 attendees total.

When is the last day I’m able to purchase tickets?
The last day you can purchase a ticket is when we sell out.

Will transportation be provided?

Yes, all transportation will be provided to/from airport, as well as around San Diego for the Technical Brewery Tours.


How many drinks will I get during the meals?
We will provide at least 1 drink coupon per meal. Anything above that can be purchased on-site.


Are discounts offered for breakfast or purchased drinks?
There are no discounts available to our group for breakfast or for individual beers purchased on-site.


Where are seminars being held?
Unless otherwise indicated in the itinerary, all seminars and hands-on workshops will be held at the Lafayette Hotel. For any events offsite, we will provide transportation.