Meet the Homebruer: Keith Pumilia

We certainly have a lot of new faces around The Bruery lately. Our newest cellarmen comes all the way from Louisiana. Keith’s energy and enthusiasm for craft beer is infectious (no pun intended), and it’s no wonder when you learn about his homebrew background.


How did you become interested in the hobby?
In 2005 I was visiting my future in-laws in Japan and my future father-in-law showed me how he had been homebrewing for years there. I was immediately hooked.
I started homebrewing the week I returned home, just on a basic extract kit. Soon after I returned home, my father-in-law sent me Charlie Papazian’s The Complete Joy of Homebrewing. I have been brewing and reading beer books ever since.

What kind of homebrews are you working on lately?
I just moved out to California, so unfortunately my setup is all over the place, but I would love to do a beer that is both a favorite of mine and my homebrewing partner Drew Walker. Drew is now Head Brewer at River Rat Brewing in Columbia, SC and we both love our Pineapple-Rosemary Pale Ale.

Any disasters to report yet?
My biggest disaster would have to be our first time bottle conditioning, bottles exploding all over the closet. Not as fun to clean up as one might expect.

Have you had any moments in brewing where you kind of had to pinch yourself?
This isn’t homebrewing related but it is beer related. I was in Denver for GABF when I worked for Abita Brewing Company and I got on stage to accept the silver medal award in the Bock Category from Charlie Papazian, the man who really intrigued me with his books on beer.

What advice do you have for a new homebrewer?
The biggest advice I like to give (and is really appropriate as a cellarman at the Bruery) is to really focus on temperature control during fermentation. For some reason this is often overlooked. The brewers make wort; the yeast makes the beer, so keep your yeast happy!


Post by Keith Pumilia, who was born and raised in New Orleans, LA. He joined the Crescent City Homebrewers Club and met many people in the brewing industry including Sonny Day, formerly of Day Brewing, then Abita; and Peter Caddoo, former brewmaster of Dixie Brewing, now Brewmaster at NOLA Brewing. Keith worked at Abita Brewing Company for five years before joining us at The Bruery.

Read about the rest of our homebrewers on The Bruery staff in our Meet the Homebruer series:

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