Hey, I’m Brian J. Papineau. bryehn is a pseudonym I’ve used online since the mid 1990s and when I started bryehn.net in 2010, I had originally planned to blog about music, sports and anything else that didn’t fit within the context of my (now mostly defunct) game accessibility website. Maybe write a beer review or two as I was just getting into the craft beer scene.
300 or so beer and cider reviews later, I’d say the idea stuck with me and I can’t remember the last time I wrote about anything else. Though I have no formal training, I’ve learned so much about the people, places, methods and industry surrounding the world’s second favourite beverage. I’ve had some great (if not fuzzy) times, expanded my circle of friends and genuinely love “beer culture”.
I’ve also gotten older. I’m 39 now and became a full-time stay-at home dad, which has been the most rewarding experience I could ever imagine, especially as a person with a disability. You wouldn’t know it to look at me, but I have a mild form of Cerebral Palsy and it’s effects forced me to stop working in 2007, hence all the time to write beer and video game reviews before my daughter came along.
Between cooking, cleaning, crafting, cuddling and all the other fun stuff that goes into being a homemaker, as well as slowing down a bit faster than most people as I age, beer has simply become less of a priority in my life. I can realistically produce a review or two a month at this point and have really chosen to narrow my focus to products I either really enjoy or think really suck.
While this may create a skewed sense of bias, I always do my best to be impartial and judge the technical aspects of a beverage’s look, smell, taste and mouthfeel. I like to describe packaging, impart a sense of monetary value and make a few personalized pairing suggestions as well.
Let’s face it though…no one reads beer reviews in 2017, so moving forward I’ll be shifting focus a bit. My slogan will read “Beer, Cider, Soda, Tea” and I plan to focus more on the latter two than in years past (which was frankly zero). I’m also going to make a point of chronicling my adventures in kitchen homebrewing more. As I love to cook, you may see some family-friendly recipes turn up and I’ve learned a lot about being a dad and self-care as a person that struggles with anxiety that I feel may help others too.
I thought about writing opinion pieces about industry news and such, but plenty of more reputable writers have that covered. I’m no stranger to sharing my opinions on Twitter (Warning: Frequent Foul Language) though and take some pretty decent beverage pictures on Instagram. I may consider video content as well, time permitting.
Though I’ve slowed down, I’m still open to attending or promoting beverage-related events, particularly those that benefit charity. If you’d like to contact me about event promotion or to send samples, please do so through my social channels. However, you should note that I don’t trade positive reviews for samples or event tickets. If I think you’re drink or event is awful, that’s how I’ll write it up.
Cheers, have a good one!