I toured the Spoetzl Brewery in mid-April but missed seeing Shiner brewmaster Jimmy Mauric because he was at a craft brewing conference in Washington, D.C. I had planned to take my rescued wirehaired dachshund Kosmos Spoetzl Stavinoha to see his namesake’s brewery, but Spoetzl, as we call him, just doesn’t have the manners needed for such an event. I am sure the brewery was relieved. Jimmy and I were able to talk by phone on Aggie Muster day, April 21, which is also Texas Independence Day, for Aggies. . . and non-Aggies alike. He’s a Shiner native—and has worked at the brewery for 39 years.
Just the facts:
Brewmaster at Spoetzl Brewery in Shiner, Texas
DOB: June 15, 1960
Education: Shiner High School, Victoria College, Texas State University
Hometown: Shiner, Texas
When I was six, I wanted to be: Probably a fireman. It sure wasn’t brewmaster at that point in my life.
What was your first paying job? Working in a feed mill. . . feeding out livestock.
Favorite quote: How hard can it be? I say that all of the time.
What would I tell a 16-year-old Jimmy Mauric: Make sure you study in school, so you don’t have to go back later in life.
No one has ever said this about me: That I don’t like to have a good time.
Most famous person I’ve ever met: I’ve been lucky. Luke Bryan was here the other day. Rick Perry has been here. I got to meet Earl Campbell and Nolan Ryan not too long ago. President Bush—43.
What I’m reading now: Nothing currently, but Foam Stability is on my list. It’s about brewing.
Favorite beer: All of them. I’m not going to pick a favorite family member. I get asked that question a lot.
Every day I . . .: Hopefully get up. Then I read the morning paper. The Victoria Advocate.
Early or late: Early.
I’m in awe of: How much this brewery has grown over the last 39 years. (Jimmy has worked at the brewery for 39 years.)
Haven’t been to the grocery store, and dinner time looms. I: Go to the deep freeze. I do all the cooking at home, and I know what we have.
Pickled beets, eggs or pigs feet: Pigs feet.
What is the biggest compliment you have ever received? Probably what kind of job I’m doing at the brewery and how we are so involved with this community.
Stick or automatic: Stick.
First car: 1974 Cutlass Supreme.
Dream car: Corvette.
Last picture you took with your phone: The Washington Monument.
Cards or dominoes: Dominoes—straight.
What song makes you want to dance? Some late 1970s song.
Why Shiner? What makes Shiner special? It’s a small beautiful little town with a great brewery. There is such a correlation—the town and brewery are joined at the hip. That’s what makes Shiner so special.
What is the most popular Shiner commercial? Oh, it’s the one about why we put twist-off crowns on the bottles. I will be walking across the parking lot and people will stop me and ask me to repeat it.
interview and photos by Katie Dickie Stavinoha