Brewer’s Beerspective: Why I Chose Craft Beer

Why I chose Craft Beer 

Hello my fellow Beer Lovers! My name is Sydney Porter, and I am the Head Brewer for Southern Yankee Beer Company. Southern Yankee Beer Co is a family owned and operated brewery! I am a Navy Brat (for those who aren’t military – that means I’m a Navy Kid), that’s traveled all over the US during my childhood with my family before landing in Texas. I studied at UConn for a Bachelors of Science in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology because once upon a time I wanted to flit around the woods and become a fairy wood nymph. At least until I found BEER. Beer was the temptation to keep me within stainless steel forests, the sound of CO2 pressure releases, and a constant state of a steam bath. I have worked as a professional brewer for 3+ years; lovingly having the name of a yeast wrangler, hop doser, malt taster, and all over janitor. 

I guess my story that is relevant to you all starts in my last year of college at UConn. My parents had been visiting me to have “the talk” – you know, the “what do you want to do with the rest of your life” talk. Sitting in a relaxed little coffee shop my Dad, Jess, proposed a radical (at least in my mind) idea that he and my brother, Alex, had been stewing on for years — a family run craft brewery.  My Mom, Christina, and the Padre mentioned something about wanting me to train professionally as a Craft Brewer so we could do this whole venture properly; meanwhile a whirlwind of possibilities blew through my brain. The only facts I knew were: 

1. I did NOT want to work in an office. 

2. I like beer. 

3. I’m a HUGE nerd, and biochemistry is fun. 

4. Hell yes. 

I didn’t know at the time that I would be delving into a world of wonderful collaboration, creativity, and an atmosphere of jolliness. The sound of a full taproom brimming with laughter, conversation, and sips of beer is on my top-ten playlist. I didn’t know that I would join a community of scientists, culinary geniuses, homegrown engineers, and sanitary specialists. Beer is so much more than just an afternoon pint with friends at happy hour.  Beer is the thoughts, ideas, and dreams of those passionate people behind the scenes. Beer is history in a glass. Beer is where the world grew roots and continues to dig deeper into the collective international community. 

I feel blessed that friends have tested my creations as we’ve built our recipe repertoire. Watching someone taste our Joose Pop IPA or RedX Express and witnessing a wave of satisfaction take over their face is why I toil away in the non air-conditioned steel tank farm in the middle of a Texas Summer!  

I look forward to seeing where the demands of the community and inspiration takes me, moving in and out of different styles of beer. I make a personal goal of getting someone to try something new every time they enter our doors — there’s a beer for everyone! So lets tip a hat, yell some Prost, Salud, Kanpai, and a big Cheers, and get moving on new beer experiences! 

2 thoughts on “Brewer’s Beerspective: Why I Chose Craft Beer

  1. AudreyWilliams Reply

    Hi,my name is Audrey

    I’ve never visited your establishment but I’m very curious. Do you have a beer tasting there,or how would I know which beer to choose…and does any of the flavors have a sweet taste. I want to do a girls night out but I know a few ladies doesn’t like 🍺.And can you rent the building for parties.

    • alex Reply

      Hi Audrey! We’ve got 10 different beers on tap right now, with more coming out soon. I think we can find something for almost anyone’s taste. Several times over the past week (we just opened) I’ve converted people that say they don’t drink beer by giving them a taste of our Shrubbery Kiniggit Fruited Belgian Wit. It’s a super light beer that we infused with 40 lbs of blackberry puree. If for some reason I can’t find you or your friends something on the beer menu, I’ve also got a delicious full bodied Cabernet Sauvignon from 75 Wine Co in the Napa Valley, a more light bodied but full flavored Argentinian Malbec from Santa Julia de Reserva, and a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc from Sea Pearl. We’ve also got the Blood Orange Cider from Austin Eastciders, which is a super drinkable option for anyone not in the beer or wine boat.

      We’re happy to discuss renting out the taproom for your party! Pricing will depend on the day, the number of guests, and whether you want us to arrange food. We’d love to hear more about your plans–shoot an email to to start the planning process.

      – Alex

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