January 5, 2014 by 250 Beers
Those that know Cassie Potts or those whose lives have been touched by Cassie Potts will be well aware that she’s ever so slightly more eccentric (in a nice way) than your average female. Only Cassie would dream up the idea of throwing a goodbye party for her blog, whatbeertodrink.com, which will sadly cease to exist in the coming weeks. Only Cassie would deem the event more of a wake than a goodbye party.
Born in the mid-seventies (nothing wrong with that) in Morwell (Vic) to Sue and Bob Potts, Cassie was soon on the move. Aged three, the Potts clan moved to Pambula (NSW) which seemed to set the scene for a fairly nomadic lifestyle as a young Miss Potts laid claim to calling nine cities across two countries ‘home’. To this day, Cassie swears blind that running away from credit card debt was NOT the motivator or contributing factor behind the roaming.
After four years dabbling in fashion in London, Ms Potts returned to Melbourne in 2010 and found social-media famedom at the start of 2011 with her now defunct mens style blog, Men: What To Wear (menwtw.com). Cassie tells me that Men: What To Wear was the manifestation of her irrepressible desire to write (and swear) but also in response to the dilemma of a number of her friends who had boyfriends that were moving to Melbourne from the likes of Toowoomba and so needed a new wardrobe (I’m sorry Toowoombans).
During that same year Cassie found it hard to ignore Melbourne’s established craft beer scene and started to show affection towards the better beers on offer. Slowly but surely more and more beer started to get a mention on menwtw.com and a second, break-away blog was born dedicated to the finer amber nectar, Men: What To Drink (menwhattodrink.com).
A move to the warmer climate of Brisbane early in 2013 saw a slight change in the name of her beery blog. Moving forward, it was to be known as What Beer To Drink (whatbeertodrink.com). The evolution was due to two reasons. Firstly, Cassie had an equal following of both genders so there was an eagerness to drop the suggestion that the blog was marketed towards men. Secondly, many of her followers failed to grasp the irony of the original tongue-in-cheekness. Personally, I reckon she was attracting the wrong type of male follower.
Cassie’s move to Brisbane is attributed to her desire to be nearer to her family and close friends. According to Cassie she returned to Queensland to mend her diminished street-cred after being a groupie of the bands Powderfinger and Regurgitator in her younger days. She jovially talks about restraining orders and the like but I’m not convinced that she’s joking.
Bizarrely, Cassie’s decision to come north from Victoria was also boosted by a commitment to herself to make a lifestyle change. She wanted to go out to pubs and bars less and spend more time slurping beer on her back deck watching Queensland sunsets…maybe also knitting in rocking chair. This plan back-fired in a big way as the relocation coincided with Brisbane’s booming craft beer scene. Whoops. Bad timing.
I first met Cassie at the launch of Noisy Minor in March 2013. We didn’t chat for long. We exchanged blog business cards and that was that. As last year elapsed our paths crossed at various functions and events. More and more conversations occurred between us and, with a mutual appreciation for good beer and a combined age totalling nearly 80, we ended up friends – ultimately as two of the six featured blogs in the recent Bacchus Beer Bloggers Series.
There are people out there that know Cassie far better than me but I’m sure they would agree with me that whatever she puts her mind to she succeeds. The current Sniff & Sip sessions at the Brewhouse are testament to that.
Her manner to jump in wholeheartedly will ensure success in her new role as Operations Manager with Ekim Brewing. By taking the day-to-day stuff away from owner/brewer, Mike Jorgensen, means that he can purely concentrate exclusively on the brewing aspects. Cassie refers to Mike’s beers as amazing. She’s not wrong. Imagine the quality of Ekim beer on the horizon now that Mike has more time on his hands!
To quote Cassie she says “Working for Ekim is one of the best things that has happened to me. Not only because I believe so strongly in the product but because my job encompasses everything I love doing; designing, writing, managing, marketing, bossing people around, guzzling beer…best job!”
Her blog will be missed in the blogosphere.
So, to commemorate the passing of whatbeertodrink.com a wake titled ‘Fin du blog’ is being held at The Scratch from 6pm on Thursday 6th February. Thanks to the generosity of Ekim Brewing Co, Bacchus Brewing Co. and The Scratch there’ll be discounted pots of Ekim’s After Battle Pale Ale and the Bacchus/What Beer To Drink collaboration beer Pash Pils 2 – Twice the Pashin’.
If you follow said blog, if you’ve ‘liked’ the What Beer To Drink Facebook page or if you’re one of those seedy men I mentioned earlier and are desperate to meet the lady in person then make yourself available for the first Thursday in February where, at precisely 11.59pm (Brisbane time) we will all say a prayer…and hopefully not miss the last train home.
Here’s the flyer (click for larger view):