When every other brewer in North Texas is focused on bottling/canning, we remain a keg only brewery.
Why? Quality, distribution, strategy.
Quality: Bottling/canning (i.e., packaging) is a ...science in and of itself. Take a look at those big beautiful displays in the supermarket sitting at room temperature. The beer is degrading from the heat and oxygen pick up. We can best protect our product in kegs. We fill our kegs with 37 degree beer, immediately move it to our cooler, and deliver straight to our customer’s cooler for dispense. The craft beer drinkers know us and know our brand; the everyday person walking down the street does not. We believe it is a mistake to put our beer in a package for a consumer to experience for the first time. We want our consumers to know our brand before we package. If that first experience with a brand is not positive, you’ve lost that consumer. As a consequence, we prefer our consumer’s first experience our beer in the manner that it is best served, on tap.
Distribution: We are running two businesses, a brewery and distributorship. Distributing our product becomes infinitely more difficult once packaging. The demands presented by grocers far exceed those of restaurants/bars. Transportation of the packaged product also presents numerous logistical challenges. There are multiple distributorships in North Texas willing and able to distribute our product. Unfortunately, with the rights Texas craft brewers lost via the 2013 legislative session, we would literally have to give away our distribution rights away for free if we signed with a distributor. We are working to change that law, but given the current climate, there is no way on earth we’d sign an agreement with a distributor to freely give away the brand we’ve worked so hard to build. Others will give their territorial distribution rights away for free; we won’t.
Strategy: We are unconventional in our approach. When everyone else does one thing, we do the other. All other North Texas brewers package, so we don’t. We prefer to lead, not follow. When everyone does something, simply joining the crowd generates less excitement with each new follower. Rest assured, it’s in the long term plan. We’d love all the free marketing on the grocery store shelf. Again, we are different; we’ll build this brand until it’s ready for the package. And in the end, the longer we don’t do it, the more you want it!