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The couple that brews together stays together

It all began with a Christmas present from his wife. She couldn’t have foreseen just how much this particular gift would impact their future family life. It was a home brewing kit. And through it, Robert Lindsley discovered his passion for brewing beer. Now, Robert wasn’t a complete newbie to the craft beer scene. His work for Krones in Franklin, Wisconsin, had him quite familiar with it – but purely from a packaging perspective. This new challenge involved brewing the beer itself. And – in for a penny, in for a pound – Robert’s wife Kate has supported the effort.

Brewing beer combines three of Robert’s passions: science, engineering, and of course beer! Even as a child, he was fascinated with science and technology. His love for beer developed a bit later. It only makes sense that he likes to unite the three. He has a lot of fun exploring the scientific aspects of brewing and then applying his findings in practice. The final product – home brewed beer – is a powerful incentive. Especially when the results are even better than expected.

Robert draws on a variety of sources for information. Books, videos, and various online forums are especially helpful. Since home brewing has been a popular hobby in the United States for quite some time, Robert and his wife have several friends and colleagues who share their passion and like to talk shop.

In the US, it’s easy to find home brewing equipment. The hobby’s popularity means there are many dedicated homebrew supply shops. And whatever Robert can’t buy ready-made, he just makes himself. He’s collected plenty of expertise in that realm through his work for Krones.

Fortunately, Robert and Kate have never had a real homebrewing fail. “We’ve been happy with everything we’ve made. So far so good!” says Robert.

There was the one time, when a Bourbon Barrel Porter had him worried at first that the alcohol content might be a bit too high. But in the end it just took a little longer and turned out really well. Their patience and persistence paid off.

Kate and Robert definitely have a positive attitude about home brewing – the great results they’ve has so far may have contributed to that, They think of poor results as learning experiences. “Every batch shows us something we can do better the next time.”

And the team definitely has ambitions: Right now, they are brewing 19 litres per batch, which they want to increase to 38 litres per batch in the near future.

They’ll have no shortage of takers for the additional beer as they have plenty of fans. Friends and family are more than happy to be their guinea pigs. And they’ve always given positive feedback. Since Robert and Kate also have different tastes, there’s been something for everyone. Robert loves dark beers like porters and stouts. Kate prefers seasonal beers and IPAs. In general, though, they both love to try new beers.

Thanks to his day job, Robert has ample opportunities to explore new beers and breweries. As a trainer for filling technology at Krones, he spends a lot of time with customers, which include quite a few breweries. His travels for Krones also expose him to new beers all the time. So he’s not likely to run out of inspiration any time soon.

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