Written by the Vermont Fresh Network


Local podcast It’s the Beer Talking featured wide ranging conversation about beer, usually (but not always) from Vermont. Last week they aired their last episode for now featuring 14th Star Brewing. We took the occasion to chat with Ryan Chaffin, co-producer of the podcast and also a VFN Board Member, about the project.

By the time the last episode aired, It’s the Beer Talking had reached 60 installments. They were a collaboration between Farrell Distributing, where Ryan is Director of Marketing and Business Development, and the Burlington Free Press, which edited and distributed the podcast. Jason Strempek and Jeff Baker from Farrell Distributing hosted the show, Abby Silin from BFP co-produced it.

Ryan says the podcast began “As a way to have a different conversation in the beer world, really focusing on not just a specific brewer but also broad industry topics and our connection to beer – we used the words “what’s your path to beer?” and that got us talking about a lot of different things.”

This variety may be what will keep the library of past episodes interesting and relevant. “That’s one of my favorite parts of this whole thing, in a lot of podcasts it becomes outdated and I’d say the vast majority of our 60 episodes will still be relevant. The conversation was really based around culture. There’s chats with brands, with mountain bikers, Ski Vermont, plus some of the biggest names in beer in Vermont and nationally, and we did have [some] technical conversations on science but you didn’t have to be into that, you could be geeky or just into the culture.”

They covered everything from interviewing Ken Grossman of Sierra Nevada to pairing beer with Halloween candy, plus forays into a few other beverage categories like Eden Specialty Ciders and Stonecutters gin. Ryan’s job was to pull that variety together. “It’s a lot of work. You have to be very far ahead with your content, have to stay true to what you’re building – for us I think we stayed true to the original thought of having a nice big top line approach to the beer world. . . it was a labor of love,” he says.

Ryan and the hosts still only have 24 hours in the day (remarkably, starting a podcast does not create more time in your life) and after 60 segments they decided it was time to pause and enjoy their success while they thought about their next creative angle.

During this pause in the beer talk, Ryan is enjoying listening to a new set of podcasts – on wine. I’ll Drink to ThatThe Wine DownWine for Normal People are all on his playlist. “I love beer, but I’m really enjoying some wine conversations and that’s an avenue I’d like to pursue down the line. . .we need a good wine conversation in Vermont.” (You can get a taste of where things might be headed in this March 2018 podcast with Sara Granstrom of Lincoln Peak vineyard).

In the meantime check out all the great content created by It’s the Beer Talking.

[Note: Farrell Distributing is an Affiliate Partner of the Vermont Fresh Network]