A few years ago, I met Ashley Routson at some Twitter meetup at X Winery here in Napa. She was a big deal amongst the social media peeps even back then. Everyone knew her. We became Twitter followers and Facebook friends, and we'd occasionally run in to each other at Trader Joe's. Then she moved away, and I didn't see her again.
About a year ago, she put a call out on Facebook that she needed a photographer to do some promo images for her new book. I was a little disappointed that she didn't think of me first, but she did reach out and we set up a time for a little photoshoot. We met at The Rare Barrel in Berkeley. The idea was to turn this warehouse into a British pub. Not sure if it worked, but in the end, it didn't matter.
One of those images eventually became the cover of her new book -- The Beer Wench's Guide to Beer: An Unpretentious Guide to Craft Beer. She and, more importantly, her publisher really liked the images, so they ultimately hired me to photograph the rest of the images for the book. Beyond that beautiful cover are more photos of Ashley plus lots and lots of beer and food shots. We did everything on location at various pubs in the East Bay and quite a few in Ashley's kitchen and backyard. Doing this project revitalized my love of beers and especially the Lagunitas Little Sumpin' Wild and Pauwel Kwak.
The book itself is an excellent guide to beer styles, beer making, and food pairing. She's an incredible wealth of knowledge, and the book is just plain entertaining to read.