Personality Test: Wigle Whiskey's Eric Meyer
Eric Meyer left government work to distill whiskey for what appears to be a simple reason.
"I wanted to make people happy or work with people who wanted to be happy," he says.
Meyer and his father, Mark, run Wigle Whiskey, the distillery that just opened in the Strip District. It is the city's first such industry since Prohibition.
The Hampton native, who now lives across the street from the distillery, was a philosophy major at the University of Vermont who earned a master's degree in public policy from Carnegie Mellon University.
He was working for a municipal government in the state of Washington -- and not enjoying it -- when he found whiskey to be the answer.
For most people, that means a chemical problem, but for him it meant discovering a business.
"I wanted to come home and my father wanted to open a distillery, so it all worked out," he says.
Mark Meyer is the master distiller at Wigle, while Eric handles many of the business chores. He also is one of the main figures at the tours and tastings Wigle offers.
Wigle Whiskey is open for sales, tours and tastings from 4:30 to 7 p.m. weekdays and noon to 5 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. Details: www.wiglewhiskey.com
The star who would play me in the movie version of my life and why:
Robert Mitchum, because he found humor in every situation
Childhood hero and why:
Tim Wakefield, because he relied on the knuckleball, something unpredictable and uncontrollable
My favorite reality show:
I don't own a TV.
Favorite brunch food:
Garlic bagel with lox and cream cheese
E. I hate sports
My favorite Pittsburgh athlete:
Favorite lunchtime spot:
Lucy's Sandwich Stand on Penn Avenue in front of the old Firehouse
My favorite thing about Pittsburgh is:
Three people I'd love to have dinner with:
Graham Greene, Bob Dylan, Satchel Paige
My favorite sandwich, plus fixings:
Vietnamese Hoagie from Lucy's Sandwich Stand on Penn Ave in front of old Firehouse
The oldest thing in my refrigerator is:
When I was 10, I wanted to be:
Professional baseball pitcher
Exercise I hate most:
I'm deathly afraid of:
The first band I saw in concert (when and where):
Jimmy Paige and Robert Plant at the Civic Arena
TV marathon I could watch all day and why:
I don't own a TV.
Favorite Pittsburgh-area landmark.
Saturday mornings you'll find me:
At Wigle Whiskey, finishing a final distillation and preparing for the day's tours.
The worst advice I ever received:
Make sure the colors of your logo are black and gold
In high school, I was:
Excited to leave
The most famous person I ever became friends with:
Is someone who is not famous yet
What you'll always find in my glove compartment:
I don't have a car.
If I wasn't a whiskey executive, I'd be:
A film director
The last book I read:
Gordon Wood, "Creation of the American Republic"
My favorite Pittsburgh pizza:
Vincent's Pizza Park
Movie I could watch every time it appears on cable:
"It's a Wonderful Life"
My first job:
My worst job:
Deck hand on boat
My favorite cable channel:
I don't own a TV.
Life would be better without:
Television and cars
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