Brookstein’s Best at Beer

While most would be fired for imbibing between 9 and 5, Jesse Brookstein ’06 gets paid to sip on his shift. In fact, it’s the first thing he does each morning at Avery Brewing Co. in Boulder, Colo.
And while taste-testing is a part of the morning routine, not every day is filled with “happy hours.”As packaging manager, Brookstein is responsible for making sure every pint that leaves the plant is perfect.

Jesse Brookstein“You can brew the best beer in the world, but it doesn’t mean anything if it’s not packaged properly,” he said. “You have to make sure all of the process is clean and efficient.”

Getting a beer from tank to kegs, cans and bottles, and finally to market is threatened by many factors, from extreme temperatures to over-carbonation.

Brookstein got his start delivering beer for a company based near Utica, where he attended Mohawk Valley Community College. He transferred to Oswego to pursue a communication studies degree and developed his love of beer personally and professionally.

An internship with Brewery Ommegang in Cooperstown gave him a taste for all facets of the business.

“I was always drawn to leaving my marketing job and checking out the bottling line or the brew house,” Brookstein said.

A semester abroad in Germany widened his palate and fostered his passion for different styles of beer and a special course with Chemistry Professor Jeffery Schneider developed Brookstein’s fascination for fermentation.

He drew all of his Oswego experiences together and headed to Colorado, which is home to many burgeoning breweries.

At Avery, he appreciates all the aspects of his job whether he’s taste-testing, working the factory floor or fixing problems with machinery or process. Brookstein has even helped name a couple of beers.

“It’s a very good mix of manual labor and intelligent thought,” he said of his job.

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