Pictured on the left, Auburn Alehouse's Independence Day American Pale Ale. On the right is Topa Topa Brewing Company's Independence Day American Pale Ale.

17 – We Slip On Flip Flops and Get Some R&R



This episode is all about America and the things that make it great, like veteran-owned businesses. HOOAH! OORAH! Aim High! Anchor’s Away! First, we drain our canteens just to refill them with beer at a brewery owned by a retired Army colonel. Next, we trade our combat boots for something more comfortable and speak with “battle buddies” who are impacting former war zones with their flip-flop foot fetish. That’s a lot of F-bombs. Finally, we sign the Declaration of Hoppiness and feature two true American ales in our Beer Dome competition. That, and our usual craic on this episode of Life in 16 oz.

Show Notes

Retired Army Col. Mike Conrad, At Ease Brewing Company (10:26)
Beer Dome – Battle of the American Pale Ales – Intro (33:31)
Army Veterans Matthew “Griff” Griffin and Donald Lee, Combat Flip Flops (37:35)
Beer Dome – Battle of the American Pale Ales – Conclusion (1:01:19)

At Ease Brewing Company / Auburn Alehouse / Topa Topa Brewing Company / Combat Flip Flops / Aid Afghanistan for Education / Mines Advisory Group America / The Station Foundation

Brandon sits at a table on the back patio at the military-themed At Ease Brewing, interviewing owner Mike Conrad, a retired Army colonel.
Brandon, right, asks Mike Conrad, a retired Army colonel and the owner of At Ease Brewing Company in downtown Sacramento, some really tough questions like, “How can I retire and make beer too?” (Life in 16 oz. photo/Paul Wade)
A military-themed tasting card is shown lying on a flight of beers labeled, "Sortie Draft Card," and lists the beers to be sampled with names like 'DD4 Hazy IPA', 'AWOL Double Hazy IPA', 'Chinook Imperial Pale Ale', and 'Recon Milk Stout.'
At Ease Brewing Company’s tasting cards take flight with a military twist. Small military-like nuances like these are found throughout brewery and within their product lines are eye-catching, and readily familiar to those who served. (Life in 16 oz. photo/Paul Wade)
Available beers are posted on the wall under a "Now in Service" sign. The beers all have military-themed names, such as a helles bock called "HellesCat", an imperial pale ale called "Chinook", and a double hazy IPA called "AWOL".
At Ease Brewing Company owner Mike Conrad, a retired Army colonel, says he likes to cover his six when brewing and makes sure all styles are available. He says if you want crazy sours or wild flavored beers, you should go elsewhere. (Life in 16 oz. photo/Paul Wade)
The olive green exterior of military-themed At Ease Brewing Company is shown. Above the door, stenciled on a window are the words, "R&R Starts Here."
Military-themed At Ease Brewing Company in downtown Sacramento has a casual, easy approach for folks wanting to simply pop in and grab a cold one. Despite their small appearance, they’ve got a big outdoor patio out back in addition to interior seating and tables out front. (Courtesy photo/Life in 16 oz.)
Several large, vertical tanks are seen in the production area at At Ease Brewing in downtown Sacramento.
At Ease Brewing Company has the brewing capacity for a second location, according to owner Mike Conrad. Learn more about him and his military-themed brewery in this month’s podcast. (Life in 16 oz. photo/Brandon McCarty)
A large pallet of vertically-stacked, brass-colored aluminum cans is shown. The pallet is on the ground and is visibly taller than the person that took the photo.
Brandon mentions the nationwide aluminum can shortage while interviewing At Ease Brewing Company owner Mike Conrad, a retired Army colonel. Mike is well aware–a shipment arrived during the interview. Lucky man. (Life in 16 oz. photo/Paul Wade)
Donal Lee and Mathew "Griff" Griffin are shown, are shown in the mountains of Afghanistan. A third man is shown, but his face is obscured by a black bar to shield his identity.
Donald Lee, left, and Matthew “Griff” Griffin, right, during one of their deployments to Afghanistan. The former Army Rangers are Combat Flip Flops’ CMO and CEO, respectively. Griff had a light bulb moment while at a combat boot factory in Afghanistan that eventually led to the founding of their business. However, the path to delivering their first order of flip flops was fraught with a number of major obstacles along the way. Listen to this month’s podcast episode to find out how they were able to persevere. (Courtesy photo/Matthew Griffin)
A sales photo for a Combat Flip Flop brand men's "coyote" colored flip flop called the "Floperator" is shown.
The men’s Floperator style flip flop sold by Combat Flip Flops. The sale of each pair funds one day of school for one Afghan girl and are made by a family-owned business in Bogota, Colombia. Listen to the podcast to learn why the company funds girls’ education and a family business in such far away places. (Courtesy photo/Combat Flip Flops)
A sales photo for a Combat Flip Flop brand men's OGs style flip flop featuring navy blue leather is shown. The sole has a white mid layer and red sole is shown.
The men’s OGs style flip flop sold by Combat Flip Flops. The sale of each pair funds one day of school for one Afghan girl and are made by a family-owned business in Bogota, Colombia. Listen to the podcast to learn more about why the company funds girls’ education and a family business in such far away places. (Courtesy photo/Combat Flip Flops)
Donald Lee and Matthew "Griff" Griffen are shown posing with the legendary, yes, legendary, Henry Rollins at an undisclosed location in Afghanistan.
Donald Lee, left, and Matthew “Griff” Griffin pose with Sharpie-holding civilian Henry Lawrence Garfield while they were deployed to Afghanistan over a decade ago. Mr. Garfield is better known as Henry Rollins, the former frontman of 80s hardcore punk band Black Flag (and is now a really famous musician, actor, comedian, radio host, podcaster, activist, and more). (Courtesy photo/Matthew “Griff” Griffin)
Pictured on the left, Auburn Alehouse's Independence Day American Pale Ale. On the right is Topa Topa Brewing Company's Independence Day American Pale Ale.
Brandon and Paul both picked patriotic-looking American Pale Ales from Auburn Alehouse of Auburn, and Topa Topa Brewing Company of Ventura for this episode’s Beer Dome blind taste test competition. Listen to the podcast to find out which beer Paul thought had both great aroma and flavor, but that Brandon said tasted like, “beer gone bad.” (Life in 16 oz. photo/Paul Wade)

 

 

 

 

 


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