While I was out last night, I enjoyed a pint of beer brewed by my friends at the Big Rock Brewery in Calgary. I ordered it to prime myself up for my upcoming trip to that beautiful city, but I also said a silent cheers to a certain man while I took my first sip.That man is Ed McNally, founder of Big Rock.
Big Rock beer was introduced to me by Gary, my travel companion for Calgary. He took me to a restaurant near his house for one of our first dates, and after seeing their extensive beer list I was a bit overwhelmed. I’m a sucker for reds (beer, that is), so Gary suggested the Warthog Ale that they had on tap. After my first taste, I immediately knew I found a new favourite.
In doing research for our upcoming trip, I remembered that the Big Rock Brewery is in Calgary, so I got in contact with the fine folks there to book a brewery tour for Gary’s birthday weekend. I’ve never been in a brewery before, let alone one that I actually favour, so I quickly became very excited about these plans (Happy Birthday, Gare! Happy Beer Day, Ash!). On top of that, everyone I was in contact with to set up the tour was friendly and accommodating. I couldn’t wait to finally get there and meet everyone.
A few weeks after I had organized everything, I found out that the one person I was hoping to meet the most, Mr. McNally himself, had passed away. I’ve never met this man, yet my heart broke.
In the weeks since his passing, memorial posts were published on the Big Rock website, all written by his employees. He seemed like such a genuine, endearing man, and I am incredibly sad that I have lost the chance to meet him.
In lieu of thanking him for his passion and dedication in person, I decided to take a moment today to pay my respects to Ed and his legacy.
Cheers to you, Ed. Thank you for your enterprising spirit. I look forward to visiting your brewery and will have a pint in your honour during my time in Calgary.
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