THE PILOT: Who are these co-called members of a new generation of brewers?
Brewers at Anchor and Sierra Nevada were the first generation to make New American Beers. Where are we now?
Adam Avery, 40, founded Avery Brewing in Boulder, CO, in 1993. The brewery produced 7,500 barrels in 2005, an increase of 17%. Dollar sales were up 30% and through the first half of 2006 were tracking at a 50% growth rate. (“I’ve spent as much on equipment in the last five months as I did in the first 13 years combined,” he said.)
Adam: “I’d say I was second generation when I started out. Hog Heaven [barley wine first brewed in 1997] really put us on the map, but our sales were still declining between 1998 and 2000. Then we made The Reverend for the first time, we started doing the series of threes [all extreme beers] and now we’ve got 19 beers we’re brewing at least once a year, third generation stuff.”
Tomme Arthur, 32, began brewing at Pizza Port in Solana Beach, CA, in 1996, where capacity limited him to 900 barrels per year. Earlier this year, Port Brewing acquired the former Stone Brewing system, which will allow Arthur to brew in 30-barrel batches and grow beyond microbrewery size. The brewery will produce both the Port beers and a new Lost Abbey brand, and has already acquired nearly 100 (both bourbon and wine) barrels that will be used to age and refine a wide range of beers. The first two Lost Abbey beers—Avant Garde and Lost & Found Abbey Ale—are already on the market.
Tomme: “I’ve been at this for 10 years now and I have always considered myself to be one of the first third generation guys. I say this because I am very comfortable in my surroundings; I know a ton of the second-generation guys very well (Dick Cantwell, Fal Allen, Phil Markowski, Garrett Oliver, el al.). I believe…they would all view me as a younger version of them. So, third generation it is.”
Sam Calagione, 37, brewed on a one-barrel system in 1995 when he and his wife, Mariah, opened Dogfish Head Brewery & Eats in Reheboth Beach, DE. After producing 29,400 barrels in 2005, Dogfish will brew 40,000 this year and be able to make much more in 2007. (“We’re brewing 24/7 right now,” Calagione said, anticipating the installation of new equipment in September). The average beer going out the door is 9% alcohol by volume.
Sam: “I think the second generation—Deschutes, New Belgium, Harpoon, Shipyard—did a great job of regionalizing. Our third generation has been real good at specializing.”
Vinnie Cilruzo, 36, began brewing at Blind Pig Brewing in Southern California in 1993. Today he sells everything he can make (about 3,000 barrels) at Russian River Brewing in Northern California, and he and his wife, Natalie, are planning a separate production facility.
Vinnie: “I think there is a generation between us and the first. I’m just going to point to Anderson Valley as an example. They took at style like ESB [Extra Special Bitter in England] and made it into an American beer with Belk’s [now known as Boont ESB]. I also think they were the first to use the 22-ounce bottle.”
Rob Tod, 38, began selling Allagash White on July 1, 1995. Despite adding equipment earlier this year, the brewery can’t keep up with demand, and will open a new brewery on an adjoining property in 2007. Allagash grew 17% in 2005 to 4,750 barrels and will sell 6,000 this year.
Rob: “You could call us another generation, but you could also say we’re all part of the same generation with one wave after another. When they first started, we already had an American-style pilsner, so they thought why try to duplicate that? Then another group figured ‘Why make an American Pale Ale your signature like Sierra Nevada?’ That kind of takes the fun out of it.”