Chip is a son of the beer business. His father, H.H. "Boots" Mims, bought the small distributorship in 1964 after working as a sales manager for six months. H.H.'s identical twin brother, Joe, joined in 1966. They had three sales routes, and Falstaff was the beer of choice. In the '70s, the flagship brand was Miller Lite but soon Mims introduced craft beers. Today Mims, based in Raleigh, is run by Chip, 50 and his 49-year-old cousin, Jeff. "I got lessons in history and beer as I sat on a stool at the bar in the company's conference room," said Chip.