Brewmaster - Omar CastrellonAlcatraz Brewing Company - IndianapolisOmar
took on brewing as a career not because he
had been a successful homebrewer, the route most pro brewers take, but because he
needed a job.Answering a help-wanted ad, he
signed on as an assistant at Old Heidelberg
(now non-brewing Tobacco Roadhouse) in Durham, NC.Only three months into this new job, the head brewer was laid off and trainee became instant brewmaster, brewing only lagers.
When Heidelberg closed its doors, Omar
moved 60 miles west to Loggerhead Brewing in Greensboro.By 1992, the now-seasoned brewer landed an assistant brewer's job at Greenshields Brewing in Raleigh, where owner Gary Greenshields and German-born brewer Thomas Kunzmann took Omar under their wings.
became the first and only brewer for River Rock in June 1997. After five years developing recipes in Little Rock while surviving two restaurant concepts, the brewery closed. Omar
visited the Orange Alcatraz Brewing Company
a few months later and threw dice with Volker Schmite.
was offered a job in Indianapolis and packed his
bags and pets for the cross country move.Since his start at ABC, Omar has consistently won gold, silver and bronze medals at the Indiana state fair every year for his brews and his craft has been warmly welcomed by the Hoosier state.