Mug Shots: Meet Josh Cosmo Cranmer
Take a peek beyond the beer you love to drink with our blog series titled, "Mug Shots." There are a lot of folks here at Boulder Beer who play a huge role in our day to day success. This is our way of introducing you to the team that makes it all happen. It's time for you to meet brewer, Joshua "Cosmo" Cranmer!
It's safe to say that while everyone at Boulder Beer knows Cosmo, they probably don't know his real name is Josh. Unless of course, they're friends with him on Facebook. (But that's cheating.) Cosmo got his nickname in high school when his friends started calling him "Cosmo Kramer" because of the timeless hit show, Seinfeld. With a last name like Cranmer, the Kramer reference is pretty much unavoidable when Seinfeld is your all-time favorite TV show. In time, the nickname stuck and became shortened to just, "Cosmo."
People from the Midwest are not an uncommon find out here in sunny Colorado and Cosmo is one of the many friendly Midwestern transplants. Looking for milder winters, live music and great beer, Cosmo relocated to Colorado in 2011 from Elkhart, Indiana. "I went to Colorado for vacation and stayed with my friend, Gus," explained Cosmo. "When I got home from vacation, I knew I wanted to move to Colorado so I saved up as much money as I could and made the move 8 months later." At the time, Gus was working at Boulder Beer and offered to help Cosmo get his foot in the door. "I didn't have any experience, but I knew I wanted to work around craft beer," said Cosmo. "I went with Gus to the Boulder Creek Festival the day I got to town and that's where I met Pauly, who worked on the production line at Boulder Beer at the time," Cosmo said. Less than a month later, Cosmo was an official Boulder Beer employee.
After Cosmo worked on the packaging line for about 3 years, he was promoted to Assistant Packaging Manager. In this position, Cosmo was able to be involved with decision making, problem solving and leadership techniques. "Managing opened the door for me," said Cosmo. "I learned so much more about fixing machines when they break, dealing with challenging situations as they come up and I also gained knowledge of how it all works back there." Eight months later, Cosmo applied for and received a new position as a brewer. So far, Cosmo likes brewing the most, although it comes with its own challenges. "I love the creativity and freedom that comes with being a brewer," Cosmo said. "We're able to put ingredients together in our own way, to create beers that people really enjoy drinking." We'll drink to that! "Sometimes intangibles come up and you have to ask questions as you go,” Cosmo explained. "You just trouble shoot, ask questions and problem solve when issues come up."
Cosmo's favorite beer of all time is Zombie Dust Pale Ale from 3 Floyds Brewing Company. "I love the Citra Hops," said Cosmo. He actually used the concept of a pale ale brewed with Citra Hops in a one-off pilot brew he created for the pub this past fall called 'Too Much Too Fast.' "I am very pleased with the way it turned out," said Cosmo. Some of you may have had a chance to try it at the pub- it was a huge hit! His favorite Boulder brews are Cold Hop British-Style Ale and of course, Too Much Too Fast Pale Ale. His favorite pub menu item is the Left Coast Chicken Sandwich with the soup of the day. Outside of work, Cosmo enjoys going to beer festivals, concerts and hanging with friends. His favorite styles of music are Bluegrass and Jam Bands. His favorite band of all time is Phish. Though he has lots of favorite shows, a memorable one that comes to mind for Cosmo is the Sunday night show at Dick's Sporting Goods Park in 2015. Also, Magnaball in New York in August of 2015. He's also one of Caribou Mountain Collective's most devoted fans and has attended more than 100 of their shows. From Nederland, Colorado, Caribou is a house favorite and are personal friends of many of us here at Boulder Beer. Read more about Caribou Mountain collective here.
In addition to live music and craft beer, Cosmo also enjoys camping, hiking and most outdoor activities. Growing up, he played ice hockey, basketball and baseball until he tore his ACL at the tender age of 13. Currently, Cosmo is an avid disc golf player. He also enjoys volunteering at beer festivals and representing Boulder Beer. "One of my favorite fests is the Keystone Bluegrass & Beer Fest," said Cosmo. He also enjoys Microbreweries for the Environment at Boulder Theater in April. Another hobby that Cosmo has been interested in lately is Chinese Astrology. "I love doing readings for people," said Cosmo. "It's really interesting!" Read more about Chinese Astrology here. Cosmo is one of the rare people whose parents are still married. They currently live in Elkhart, Indiana and he has one sister Jamie, who lives near Indianapolis. He has been lucky enough to travel home once or twice a year since he moved to Colorado but is encouraging his family to visit him out west this year.
In 2016, Cosmo is looking forward to making more pilot brews and progressing his beer knowledge. "I want to see how consistently I can brew awesome beers," said Cosmo. He is looking forward to the remodel and possibly a new mill. He would also like to attend Telluride Bluegrass Festival in June. His long term goal is to own a brewery one day. When asked to share one special memory from his years here at Boulder Beer, Cosmo recalled an evening on the back patio rocking out to funk/rock band, Funkiphino. "I was so impressed by the comradery among staff," said Cosmo. "I was new so it was the first time I really realized what a family we all are." Cosmo, your individuality and free spirit are so admirable. Thanks for all you do!