Brewer Magazine Q&A: Mark Medlin, Sweetwater Brewing

This is a part of a continuing series of Q&As with brewers from across the U.S.
Brewer Magazine will share business and personal insights from Brewmasters, Head Brewers, Brewing Managers and others each Wednesday and weekends to help you, a fellow brewer, Brewmaster or brewing manager get to know each other better in the industry and learn more to better develop your own brand.

Mark Medlin, Brewmaster, Sweetwater Brewing — Atlanta

BREWER: What is a lesson learned within your position that sticks with you to this day?
MEDLIN: I learned early on the importance of always striving to improve brewing processes and do better at the things we do.

BREWER: Who is your mentor in the industry and why? What have you learned from them?
MEDLIN: Greg Hall, former Brewmaster at Goose Island Brewing Co. He taught me the importance of quality and how to make great craft beer.

An employee works on the bottling line on Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2016, at SweetWater Brewing Company in Atlanta, Ga. (AJ Reynolds for The Brewer Magazine)

BREWER: What have you added to your brewery lately that’s unique or making your business more successful?
MEDLIN: We just added a new “tank souring” process to one of our large fermentation vessels. We’re excited at the possibilities of making sour beers on a large scale.

BREWER: In today’s business climate for craft beer, how will your brewery grow?
MEDLIN: By being unique and maintaining excellent quality in the marketplace. With so many breweries out there and increased competition, this is more important than ever before.

BREWER: What sort of innovations in craft beer excite you?
MEDLIN: Right now New England style IPAs and fruited wood-aged beers are some of my favorites.

BREWER: If you had one strategy that you could implement to better the craft beer business, what would it be?
MEDLIN: We should all be doing our part to keep the quality of craft beer high. We don’t want consumers to gravitate away from craft because of a few bad experiences with old beer.

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