So this is it...

On the eve of a phenomenally busy weekend, I have finally managed to get this website up and breathing. But of course, I did not do it alone, and so the first order of business is to thank some folks...

First, my wife, Sandy Gilbert

To begin with, she did the amazing color work on the new logo, and the amazing visual was a strong shot of fuel into the process to get this all up and going. Second, she puts up with this, all of this... the brewing, the constant thinking and talking about beer, the meetings, the shopping (and trust me, not her kinda shopping), the constant drinking under the banner of research (okay, that part may not be so bad), the complete takeover of up to half the house and a whole refrigerator and most of our social schedule... seriously, it is truly never ending. And she jumps right in.

My beautiful daughters, Sarah and Sophie

who bought me my first Mr. Beer kit for Christmas years ago, and thus began what is now simply known as The Obsession.

Then, there is Telly

the amazing tattoo artist who gladly gave us the original line work for my tattoo to use as the logo, which once again, jumpstarted the entire process.

And Finally, All the Others...

The family, friends, other homebrewers, guys at meetings, guys on forums, mentors, teachers, critics, judges... the literally hundreds of people I don't even know who have seriously affected my life by being part of this amazing hobby.

So why do this? In light of FaceBook, dozens of forums, and user groups, and communities... does the world really need one more website? Probably not. But I have discovered an interesting thing on this journey... beer folks tend to be geeks. Lots of us are into IT, and even those who are not are technical, detail oriented, and tend to be information oriented. So why not? It will help me get and stay organized, share some of my knowledge and advice, hopefully help some other brewers, and beer connoisseurs, to learn more, meet others, and enjoy the craft.

Let's be honest, in the end, it is mostly all about me and Sandy and our love for the hobby and craft. But if I give this enough love and energy, maybe... just maybe... this can become a more local, more private, more personal place for fellow beer aficionados to hang out...and how cool would that be. In the next few weeks, there will be many more blogs, and hopefully an online forum and discussion group. I am happy to accept any help I can get, so if you are a tech geek and want to jump in, please just say so.

And with that, here we are... welcome!