Riley Finnigan is the brewmaster at Three Taverns and oversees all beer production and packaging. He recently joined the 3T family after spending two years brewing abroad in Spain and before that, six years at Avery Brewing in Boulder, Colorado. Read more about him below in our "Behind the 3" feature, where we highlight instrumental folks of Three Taverns:
What was your first experience with craft beer?
Growing up craft beer was always around. Brews like Rogue's Dead Guy and Deschutes' Mirror Pond Pale were in our fridge in place of macro-lagers. Growing up in Oregon meant drinking good beer was the default, not the exception. I specifically remember falling in love with Black Butte Porter on a camping trip with some friends.
What do you like most about being a brewer and running the show at Three Taverns?
Brewing at Three Taverns is great. The brewhouse is the perfect mix of automation and "hands-on brewing". The pilot system also allows the whole crew to express themselves creatively, which leads to some really fun things going on tap in the tasting room. What I like most about running the show around here is the ability to call people out when they play terrible music.
Where were you born/raised?
I was born outside of Dallas and moved all over as a young kid. But Oregon will always be home; I grew up in Bend.
What are some of your favorite spots in Atlanta to eat/drink/hang?
So far my favorite spots to hang in Atlanta are the great music venues - Terminal West and Variety Playhouse are great. The Earl in East Atlanta Village, and of course The Tabernacle.
Desert island beer?
This is such an impossible question to answer. Depending on the location and climate of said island, I'm gonna go with either Modelo Especial, Maui's Coconut Porter, or Odell IPA.
When you’re not drinking beer what are you drinking?
Water or Tequila/Mezcal.
Besides beer, what are some of your other interests/hobbies?
Going to shows, playing guitar and mandolin, traveling, hiking, backpacking, and snowboarding.
Last great movie you saw/book you read/album you listened to?
Last great book I read was probably David Byrne's "How Music Works". Favorite album of the last year or so is Rayland Baxter's "Wide Awake".