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jonJon Graney, Co-Founder
Jon is a founding member and leads The Basement Beer Tastings. He enjoys the art and the nuances of brewing. Also a wine enthusiast and amateur mixologist, his beer tastes lean towards stouts, shandies, spicy seasonal offerings, and anything complex.

Mike Festi, Co-Founder
Mike is a founding member of The Basement Beer Tastings, and volunteered his responsibility for the first Wild Card tasting. Willing to try anything, his beer choices are an eclectic mix. He bases his ratings on the motto, “I know what I like and what I don’t like.”

rickRick Czapla
Rick began beer tasting in the neighborhood bars near Providence College in the 1980s, when Old Swill, PBR and ‘Gansetts were standard fare.  After graduation, Rick sojourned through western Europe, visiting every beer hall and pub he could.  Finding that perfect IPA, brown ale, pale ale, English bitter, or any brew with a dark hue is Rick’s passion,  giving new meaning to the slogan, “If it’s brown, flush it down.”

Bob Bowden
Bob rounds out the original “core four” beer-tasting fraternity of The Basement Beer Tastings.  While he claims he lacks the knowledge of other beer tasters, he makes up for it by tasting many beers.  He employs colorful vocabulary to mask his lack of sophistication. He is partial to ales and stouts, and swoons easily when an imperial stout enters the room.

Amy Graney
Biography coming soon.

Guest Panelists

Lisa Bowden
Karen Czapla
Sara Esthus
Bob Festi
Ellen Festi
Ken Hebert
Eric Johnson
Susan Leach-Hebert
Anne Williamson

(Panelists earn “guest” panelist status after attending their first tasting. After three attendances — including directing a Wild Card tasting — guest panelists become full panelists.)

Thoughtful reviews for the modern beer drinker.