Ashton got into microbrewed beers back in 1986 and along the way decided to pursue brewing as a career. By the time he completed his graduate studies at UC Davis Ashton was concerned that the growth in the microbrewing business was going to stop before he got his boots wet. That didn’t happen! The term craft brewing replaced microbrewing and the specialty beer thing blew up. Ashton sure feels lucky to have been part of this whole thing for the last 25 years.
Inside the brain of The Wizard:
How did you start brewing beer?
Homebrewing with my friend Tommy Flores who also has made a career as a brewer.
Favorite Beer Memory?
Touring a little brewery called Lindenbräu in Gräfenburg, Germany in 1994. The owner and brewmaster was super gracious and did not speak a word of English, and Tommy and I did not speak a lick of German, but the language of beer was all that was needed.
Dream beer vacation?
Visiting the world’s best breweries 150 years ago, knowing what I know today about brewing.
First time brewing beer, what happened?
I had a great time brewing a really bad stout!
Favorite piece of brewing terminology/lingo?
Best part of the brewing process?
Seeing people enjoy our beer.
Favorite way to cook with beer?
This is a tie for me. Beer in one hand and grill tongs in the second is really great! I also like using beer as a marinade for grilled meats.