What do you do at Rhinegeist?
I’m the Intergalactic Director of Packaging. If beer makes it to the moon I’m in charge of that packaging. If it’s cans or kegs, in this universe or any, I make sure they get packaged correctly. In more earthly terms, I also ensure that we have the people and the supplies to package and keg our beer.
So JD, What did you have for breakfast?
Coffee. I always have coffee for breakfast (as he takes a big swig).
What are some of the challenges that get thrown your way?
Ah, the hardest thing is that we’ve been running our canning machine 24/7 so anytime a problem arises we’ve gotta be on it.
But isn’t there a new canning line on the horizon?
Yeah absolutely, we couldn’t be more excited — this thing is a beast. What currently takes us 32 hours is going to take us 5. It looks like Willy Wonka was the engineer!
I always think Cheetah, but maybe it’s because I’m fat and slow. They’re elegant and beautiful to watch run.
Is that a go-to line of yours?
Nope— first time I’ve ever said that!
Tell us more about this epic beard…
I’ve had this beard forever, I mean, a long long time. I was trimming it for years but I like to think I was way ahead of the beard curve. In its current state I’ve let it go completely for almost three years.
What’s your favorite Rhinegeist beer?
Can I say the entire Ink (Imperial Stout) lineup? In order, Ink in a Pappy Van Winkle bourbon barrel, Ink in a sherry barrel (our 2015 silver medal at GABF), Café Ink and then our regular delicious unbelievable Ink. Stouts are definitely my favorite. It’s the rich creaminess and how they still retain their stout flavor without being overburdened by the barrel. Everything Luke Cole does in barrels is pretty amazing. They’re delicious. Go Luke.
If you were a Rhinegeist beer what would you be?
That’s a real question, huh? That’s hilarious. (With a pensive gaze) Probably Truth— I’m an honest, deep and mysterious man.
Piece of apparel you wear the most?
The Rhinegeist cranberry hoodie. It’s sweet and makes me look pretty.
With a girl. That would pretty much do it.
Ping-pong or Corn hole?
Oh, ping pong. Growing up my brother and I used to play ping pong so that’s a no-brainer, even though my buddies do own a corn hole company….It’s probably the little back and forth sound of a volley.
What’s the best part of your personality?
I have heard people tell me that I’m welcoming, and I’m fond of that trait. I want everyone to be as comfortable as I am. I want everyone to be a part what we’re doing here.
What do you look forward to doing most every day?
For me it’s all about the people. I get to come here and say hey to the brewers, or my team. The whole idea for me is that we work at this cool ass place, a beautiful old historic building, and it truly makes me feel like a part of the city. I have great coworkers and we’re putting out beer, what’s more fun than that?
Do you have a famous look alike?
On the streets I get James Harden a lot. And hey, by the way, I had the beard and mohawk first.
What’s your favorite sandwich?
That’s a real question too, right? I like all sandwiches. Particularly at home I always go with the breakfast sandwich. Mine have one a piece of toast, an egg in a variety of styles — scramble it, fry it, sunny side up, I like to mix up my egg —and then top it off with a delectable slice of cheese.
What’s something about you most people don’t know?
I’m certified scuba diver.
Oh yeah, that’s what I do on vacation, so is Luke Cole, it’s easy! You get certified; take a couple classes and the next thing you know you’re in Curacao. I’ve also been to Belize, gorgeous place, and the beautiful Florida Keys.
What’s your best dish in the kitchen?
Can I say the breakfast sandwich?