40 Years in Beer (Book II) Part 46: Expansion culminating in espresso and the Red Room in 1993
Previously: 40 Years in Beer (Book II) Part 45: The Silo and Oertels, as well as a pivotal newspaper article (1992). There were two trips by plane, separated by twenty years. In retrospect, they seem like bookends. The first came in July of 1991, when I left New Albany for Košice to teach English, returning after seven months, and subsequently entering the O’Connell family restaurant and business. Then, roughly five hundred years later (okay, January 2, 2010), I flew back from a Christmas season in Germany with my second wife Diana; we’d been married in 2004. There followed a line in the sand, an purely involuntary 42-month moratorium on foreign travel owing NABC’s Bank Street Brewhouse project, which was my idea, but had struggling mightily since its 2009 founding. Already we seemed headed toward perpetual non-profit status (the brewery was NOT incorporated as a charitable write-off), and the coming years resembled trench warfare. Speaking of metaphors, to this very day I’ve never been to the Waterloo battlefield in Belgium, but why go there when I experienced my own personal Waterloo at BSB. By 2015 the garbage chute was greased for a metaphorical boat ride to far-off St. Helena, and bags were being packed. Those 42 months...Read more