Brewers Using Local

Justin Graham - Radical Road Brewing Co.

What's your position at Radical Road Brewing Co., and how did you get started in the craft brewing industry?

I am the Head Brewer at Radical Road Brewing Co.

Radical Road is the first professional brewery that I’ve worked at. In July of 2016 the owners of RR took a chance on a 23 year-old kid who claimed that he knew how to brew. Before that I was merely an avid homebrewer, and had been brewing for two and a half years.

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What's new at your brewery?

We’re just starting to get into alternative fermenters such as Brettanomyces and Lactobacillus, so we’re very excited to pump out some sour and/or funky brews. Also as the weather gets colder we will be brewing more dark beers.

What's the best part of being a part of the Ontario craft brewing community?

Well, it’s in the name, Community. All of the other brewers or suppliers that I’ve met since getting the job here at RR have been incredibly friendly and welcoming. Larger breweries have helped us out with advice or even a small pitch of yeast without expecting anything in return. It’s truly a great group of people.

Your favourite food and beer pairing?

Spicy Indian curry dishes with a hoppy pale ale. I find that the heat of Indian spices and the bitterness and flavour of hops meld so well together.

Where does the inspiration for your beer names come from?

I leave most of the naming to my higher-ups, I’m not much of a salesman myself, so I leave the marketing to them, but lately we’ve been naming our beers after songs from various bands that we like.

At the moment, what's your favourite beer not produced by your brewery?

For the longest time Flying Monkeys Smashbomb Atomic IPA has been my favorite, but lately I’ve been buying more Side Launch Mountain Lager and GLB’s Sunnyside Session IPA than any other beers.

If you could grab a beer with someone famous, who would it be and why?

Although he passed away a few years ago, I’ll go with Christopher Hitchens. As one of the greatest writers, speakers and thinkers of the modern era, I would love to pick his brain on a number of topics.

What are you itching to try next?

I really would like to try getting some fruit beers out. Fruit fermentations have been some of my favorite things to make. I might even make some Fruity Brett beers.

What was the last beer you used Pleasant Valley Hops in, and what variety of hops was it?

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I recently brewed an American Brown Ale with freshly picked wet hops from Pleasant Valley. The aroma on those Centennial hops was fantastic. Very much looking forward to tapping those kegs.