Founder, Owner, Head Brewer and Beer Geek
Beer is not just a passion it is an obsession! At the impressionable age of 21 he spent many an afternoon sitting at the New Belgium Brewing tasting room bar and waxing philosophical on the ins and outs of making beer, owning and operating a brewery (this was back in the day when you could easily find a seat at the tasting room bar). Ryan had taken the tour so many times he took to giving the tour to friends and family!
At the time, owning a brewery seemed like something only the uber-rich could afford. Then the modern era of craft beer started to take off and the economic feasibility of a small brewery began to look more realistic. In the years since those afternoons at New Belgium, his love of all things craft beer continued to grow. All the while he had always wanted to try his hand at homebrewing. Being an avid cook he figured it wouldn’t be much different … you learn the basics, the flavors, the results of various experiments, and then start to combine those into unique and interesting recipes.
Ryan brewed his first batch 1 month after moving into a house with a garage in South Park Hill to store his newly acquired brewing equipment. He has averaged a batch every three to four weeks since. Ryan began Formulating his own recipes began with the second batch. Nearly every homebrewer has had the thought to open their own brewery but for one reason or another they don’t take the leap. The idea had not seriously crossed Ryan’s mind until one evening Christa turned to him and said “We should open a brewery, seriously, let’s do it.”
The idea began to take hold and he started exploring the possibilities from a business standpoint. Ryan soon realized the time was not right and the preparations ceased. Three years later in February of 2013 they began to talk about it again and thought well let’s just write a business plan and then see what happens. And then, let’s talk to family and see what they think. And that lead to, let’s talk to potential investors and see if anyone is interested. And finally, let’s talk to a bank, look for a location, apply for a loan, file our TTB paperwork and before we knew it 10 months flew by and we had launched Fiction Beer Company in the East Denver Park Hill neighborhood—a combination of the things Christa and Ryan both enjoy: beer and books.
Q & A
What is your favorite beer style?
Sour ales. An acquired taste that I picked up with the first bottling of La Folie by New Belgium. They are complex and original beers that come in all styles, sourness levels, and flavors. I’m thirsty for one just typing this!
What is your favorite beer?
The one in my hand. Currently, Subtle Ruse from Fiction Beer Company.
What is your favorite book?
Most books that come in a series, especially adventure, sci-fi, and fantasy. I thoroughly enjoy reading the continuing adventures of a character I am familiar with. I enjoy getting sucked into a world that is unlike our own. Christa says this answer doesn’t count and I must choose a favorite…if that is the case let it be The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams, at least for now.
Who is your favorite author?
Stephen King, his books cross so many of the genres I enjoy the most…sci-fi, fantasy, horror, and the outlandish.