Thursday, April 14, 2016

Lew Has Left The Building

I regret to say that four months after resigning my position as managing editor, I will no longer be writing a column or whiskey reviews for Whisky Advocate. After more than 20 years of being part of the voice of the magazine, I was told on Monday that because the magazine was "going in a different direction," my services in those capacities were no longer needed.

I was afforded an incredible opportunity, and I'm grateful for that, however it ended. It has also been a complete pleasure to work with this loosely-knit team of the best whisky writers in the world. Every three months, fascinating writing would arrive in my inbox, affording me a fantastic whisky education.

It has been an equal pleasure to work with representatives from all parts of the industry, to watch that grow from a solid core of long-term veterans in the mid-1990s to a small army of exciting new personalities as the industry entered another boom phase, and then to welcome the small producers of the craft distilling category. I very much look forward to continuing that association.

I've certainly also enjoyed the readers of the magazine: their excitement, their loyalty, their engagement, and their eager interest in the brown spirit that's entranced us all. It's been fantastic to meet you at the events over the years, and I hope to see all of you in the future.

Of course, I'm not leaving whiskey! There's a new book project to work on, I've returned to writing this blog (really, I have, and I know I owe you some whiskey reviews), and several magazines have welcomed me back as a freelancer (with more projects in the works). I'm also back to writing about beer, which I missed terribly, and that will now expand as well. I may even expand my writing into new areas; I have a couple projects percolating.

Onward and outward!
One door closes, and many more open. What do the different directions of the future hold for me? Nothing's sure, but I hope it holds more opportunities to see each of you, and more chances to work with you, in some capacity or another. I'm certain it will hold more chances to share a drink and some laughs.

My very best regards,

Lew Bryson


17 comments:

EZilla Pastor said...

Their loss Lew.You are a distinguished and classy reviewer.The best of luck as you transition to new opportunities. PROST!!

Scott Harris said...

Good luck, Lew!!

Unknown said...

Wow...the magazine and Whisky Fest will not be the same without you. Your articles, reviews and opinions were always what I most looked forward to. Sad to see you go, but I'll be sure to follow your future endeavors!

HighWaterBrewing said...

What a great legacy!! Congratulations on your many years and get out here and enjoy some sunshine and fresh beers ROADTRIP!!

Jack Kenny said...

Perhaps the kindest words ever written about Marvin Shanken.

gordon.dundas said...

All the best Lew and hope to see you somewhere soon, Maybe the Bardstown Hampton Inn for a late night Bourbon! Cheers Gordon

Gregg Wiggins said...

Nicely said, Brother Lew. But I do wonder...

If you have a couple of projects percolating, does that mean you're going to start writing about coffee as well?

Beerking said...

Their loss Lew. In the meantime, it is great news that you are returning to Beer reviews. Looking forward to them!

THOMAS CIZAUSKAS said...

The Whiskey Advocate "going in a different direction," no longer requiring the services of Mr. Bryson, is like listening to a lecture on bourbon with only a glass of water to drink.

We thirsty ruck wait for Lew's next ventures!

Bill said...

Best of fortune!

My personal experience, and everybody else's may differ: I was a big fan of Wine Spectator for years, because while I understood the target audience was for folks with more money than I had, it was a great way to learn about wine because every issue focused on 2-3 different regions, many of which produced affordable wines -- so it helped me learn and explore without getting burned (that often), and meanwhile decide what to save up for re: the pricier bottles/regions. What helped was the 22-issues-a-year schedule -- that allowed them the space to range from high to low, and talk about a wide variety of things relating to wine. I had hoped for the same from Whisky Advocate when Shanken Pubs took over, but found that there wasn't nearly as much space devoted to education and more affordable offerings as there was devoted to whiskies targeted to folks with more money than I had. Which is fine, but I do wonder whether the magazine might reach a wider audience if it moved to 8-12 issues a year rather than four, giving it space to better serve a wider range of readers.

In the meantime, I'll get your book for a better overview!

CarolynS said...

Wow! I can't believe that Whisky Advocate is so short-sighted as to not recognize that you are a pillar of whisky literacy. Your voice holds such significance throughout the spirits community! I guess their new direction is "down"! Pity the fools!!

Bev Tastings said...

Hey Lew - you're always welcome to come taste great whiskeys with Tastings.com!

Bev Tastings said...

You're always welcome to come taste great whiskeys - and Beer! with our judge panel at Tastings.com. We have an ongoing schedule every week. Come to Chicago!

Joshua said...

Man-o-Maneshewitz! All the best in your perhaps unexpected but bright new future!

tony Knipling said...

Best to your future. Lots of new adventures to come

Anonymous said...

Can't even imagine what this "different direction" could possibly be... sounds like boilerplate corporate-driven excuses to me.

Shane Kinloch said...

I look forward to reading your next book Lew. I recommend 'Tasting Whiskey' to everyone I meet who is interested in learning more about whisky.

All the best for the future mate.