We’re thrilled to announce the newest addition to our brewing team, Head Brewer, Eric Hernandez! Eric joined Concrete Beach back in September, coming to The Magic City straight from The Big Apple where he spent the past several years as Head Brewer for Coney Island Brewery. Eric’s experience and passion for brewing goes beyond that, but we aren’t here to put words in his mouth. We sat down with Eric to learn a little more about his past and what brought him to Miami. Check it out below!
Q: How long have you been brewing beer?
Eric: I have been brewing for about 5 years. Prior to my brewing career, I was working in the quality laboratory at a milk and yogurt processing plant. It wasn’t until I went on vacation and visited a few breweries that I realized I could take my experience in the dairy industry and easily apply it into to brewing beer. I recognized that I could actually make a living from something that I was passionate about!
Q: What made you want to move to Miami?
Eric: I have always loved Miami; I have a lot of family here. This was my dad’s initial home after he immigrated from Cuba, before moving to Los Angeles. Miami has always been a very special place to me.
Q: What excites you about brewing in Miami? How do you expect the city and culture to influence your recipes?
Eric: Miami has such an incredible mix of cultures, there’s so much inspiration to pull from! One of my favorite things to do is taking a unique twist on a traditional style, incorporating local fruits and regional ingredients. The huge variety of flavors makes it easy! Coming from LA and NY, I was happy to find Miami to be so fast-paced. There is a liveliness that runs throughout the whole city that inspires great beers. Like our new Chicha Pale Ale!
Q: Has anything about Miami surprised you so far?
Eric: I didn’t realize that the brewing community in South Florida was so robust! There are some really great beers coming out of this city!
Q: Favorite food you’ve had in Miami so far?
Eric: I’m pretty sure that I eat a croquette and order a colada on the daily.
Q: How was your first Hurricane experience?
Eric: Talk about jumping right into it! I did wind up evacuating with family and we were extremely lucky not to be hit as bad as others. We were also thankful that the brewery was fully up and running after just a few days.
Q: What is your favorite beer on tap at the Brewery?
Eric: Bouvelay Gallery Series beer: it’s one of our more complex and interesting beers that we have on tap. A lot of subtle oaky notes, and we haven’t made anything like it!
Keep an eye out for Eric and make sure to say hi the next time you’re at the Social Hall or one of our upcoming events.