Our new Head Brewer

We’re delighted to announce that Bill Laukitis is stepping up to be our new Head Brewer here at Rye River. The Holland, Michigan man had an interest in beer from an early age with Bell’s and Founder’s breweries on his doorstep. Bill spent his twenties travelling the world stopping and working in Norway, the Czech Republic, New Zealand and the UK before settling in Ireland. Along the way he discovered a world of great beers. He dabbled in home brewing in New Zealand continuing his love affair with beer. 

How did we find Bill?

Bill’s first job in Ireland was in St James’ Gate where he went through their Beer Specialist training. He became more involved in the home brewing scene and started to share his brews with friends and colleagues. One of those beers led him to a job in Rye River where he started as an Assistant Brewer. Over the last three years Bill has worked his way up from Assistant Brewer to Shift Brewer to Lead Brewer and finally to the position of Head Brewer. At the same time he has completed an Institute of Brewing and Distilling course. 

Bill’s first commercial recipe was the Crafty Brewing Company American Style Pale Wheat. This beer romped home with the title of Best Irish Wheat Beer at the Alltech Dublin Beer Cup. That’s really hitting the ground running! This beer has won many fans and has gone from being a Limited Edition to a permanent part of Lidl’s Crafty Brewing range. 

What to look forward to!

Bill is continuing to experiment with his home brews with some that are frankly off the wall! We are looking forward to seeing him developing more new beers at Rye River. When he’s not brewing beer Bill enjoys cooking, especially smoking on his grill and hanging out with his daughter. Good luck in your new role Bill from all of us at Rye River!