About Us

Before Pacific Brew News we were simply the SOBER group, and really we haven’t changed a whole lot – we just have microphones now.  Essentially, we are a group of beer enthusiasts in Northern California.  We have full time jobs, families, homes, pets and hobbies outside of beer, but when we’re together it is usually to celebrate all things beer.  We recruit yellow beer drinkers as well, walking them through to a new appreciation of beer.

No.  We don’t have a favorite beer.


AKA: Fuzzy D, Preacher Boy, PBR,

Rick is best known as the Beer Director for DRAFT Magazine, but also spent time working as a Technical Writer for a large computer company in Northern California and is responsible for the PBN Site, recordings, editing and mail services.  He has been homebrewing for only a couple of years and is a member of the Gold Country Brewers Association, American Homebrewers Association and other local beer appreciation groups.  Rick was born in Oregon, went to school in Washington and Southern California before getting a BA in Theology.  Future endeavors include First Miracle and maybe a book or two.


AKA: The Beer Geek

Mark has more knowledge about beer than most folks we know.  Having lived in many parts of the world it is no surprise that he knows not just the facts of beer, but also how to truly enjoy beer.  A proud father, a great writer and a fantastic beer judge, Mark is eager to teach locals about beer and is also willing to learn from others as well.


AKA: The Hop Hunter, Big Mike, Taliban Mike, The Dude, Fearless Leader, The More Than Mortal One
Founder of the SOBER group

A humble man, Mike has more first-hand knowledge about the craft beer industry than most can hope for.  Name a brewery on the west coast and it is likely that Mike has either been there or tried their beers.  Soft spoken and always looking for the next uber-hopped beer, Mike has a nose and palate built for IPAs and Double IPAs.  When not working or spending time with his family, you can find Mike on his bicycle – riding like a real man.

Jeff B

Jeff has been around beer for quite some time, and recently has been putting his degree in journalism to work in his writing for the Pacific Brew News blog. Jeff is a homebrewer, father, husband and also works for a big computer company during the day.