Wednesday 6 January 2010
Europe to Get Stoned?
Read on to find out what he had to say:
Me: What’s driving this decision? Is it economic? Environmental? Both?
Greg: Actually, the challenge and adventure is the #1 driver. Yes, we feel it is a good environmental and (will eventually be) a good economic decision, but ultimately we want to have fun.
Me: What’s you largest European market?
Greg: No good answer to this as we only export anecdotally. We only currently export to Sweden and the UK, both are minimal. We won't ship meaningful amounts of our "fresh" year-round beers due to Europe's bothersome ideas that beers need to have a 12-month date code on them. We refuse to do this since we only approve them to be 3-months old before we don't want them sold any more.
Me: You mention that the beer would be more regional, does that mean you are thinking about making different beers at this new brewery for the market?
Greg: We would brew to our style. There's already plenty of beers being brewed "for the market." If you look at the UK, for instance, that means fizzy yellow beer (based on volume). We don't make fizzy yellow beer.
We won't make fizzy yellow beer. We don't make boring beer. We make Stone beer. I would say that the majority of Brits would be disappointed in the beers we will be making if we go forward with this project, based upon the beers that the majority of the Brits drink. But on the other hand, I don't expect the majority to even know we exist as the majority of Europeans don't seek out the unique and special, they just do what what the telly tells them...just like the majority of Americans. Our beer isn't, and never will be, for them.
Me: Would it be the Stone brand or a spin-off a la He’Brew/Coney Island?
Greg: We intend to make Stone beers.
*In fairness, I probably owe about 20 people beers from various events but I have to take a shot at Greg when he's not in the room because he's too damn smart to try and take the mickey out of any other time!