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Dogfish Head plans return to Tennessee, 3 other states, by end of 2013

June 26, 2013 By: mike Category: Breweries, Craft beer, Distribution, Memphis

Dogfish Head, which stopped distribution of its beers to Tennessee and three other states in 2011 due to production limitations, is coming back.

Dogfish Head craft beerExpanded capacity is allowing Dogfish Head to make a return to shelves and taps in Tennessee, Indiana, Wisconsin and Rhode Island before the end of the year, the Delaware-based microbrewery announced today.

Here’s the full press release, as well as a video from founder Sam Calagione:

Thanks for hanging in there, Tennessee, Indiana, Wisconsin and Rhode Island

In 2011, we made the difficult decision to scale back Dogfish Head’s distribution. With a heavy heart, we stopped sending beer to Tennessee, Indiana, Wisconsin and Rhode Island.

It wasn’t our goal to upset Dogfish Head fans and distributors, but with demand so far in front of supply, we just couldn’t brew enough beer. We were left with a choice: leave shelves empty and frustrate beer enthusiasts everywhere, or stay true to our off-centered roots, pull back, and focus on strong, smart growth.

We chose the latter, and although it caused some short-term disappointment, we’re glad we did. Dogfish Head is still family owned, we still brew 100 percent of our off-centered ales ourselves here in coastal Delaware, and we’re continuing to change the way people think about beer.

We have maintained double-digit growth in the past few years while investing in our brewery to increase capacity beyond the 200,000-bbl pace we are now at. This expansion will be completed in a few months, and we’ll finally have the capacity to reopen the markets we had to pull out of. We’re happy to announce that we’ll be hunting for distribution partners and regional sales managers in those four states and plan to be on shelves and taps there before the end of the year.

Thank you for hanging in there and having us back. See you soon!

Dogfish Head to brew ‘American Beauty’ ale in collaboration with Grateful Dead

October 17, 2012 By: mike Category: Breweries, Craft beer

Sam Calagione at the Great American Beer Festival

Dogfish Head founder Sam Calagione poured beer this past weekend at the Great American Beer Festival in Denver.

Dogfish Head Craft Brewery and the Grateful Dead are collaborating on the latest music-inspired ale that will be released next year. “American Beauty,” a strong pale ale, will feature all-American hops and a special ingredient that fans will help select.

Here’s the full press release:

Dogfish, Grateful Dead brewing grassroots collaboration

(Milton, DE) – Dogfish Head Craft Brewery and Grateful Dead, two pioneers who built their followings by connecting directly with beer lovers and music lovers, are collaborating on the newest beer in Dogfish’s line of off-centered ales.

Working in that happy place between creative ideas and like-minded people, the off-centered brewery and free-spirited band have been trading ideas for a beer they’re calling “American Beauty.” They’ve settled on a strong pale ale with all-American hops and barley, and now they’re asking their loyal fans to suggest a special ingredient – and the Dead-inspired story behind it.

Dogfish Head's American Beauty“Grateful Dead Productions is extremely pleased to be partnering with Dogfish Head Craft Brewery on the American Beauty pale ale. We’ve looked for a long while for the perfect brewery to team up with for a Grateful Dead-inspired brew, and feel we’ve finally found the right fit. Aside from Dogfish’s history with music-themed brews, we love their beer, and think it’s the best around. Plus, these are really good people and are the type of folks we want to work with,” says David Lemieux, legacy manager for Grateful Dead.

“The feedback the band got from Dead Heads was always an important factor in their shows,” says Dogfish Founder and President Sam Calagione. “And at Dogfish, we’ve always thought of our pub regulars and brewery tour guests as an informal focus group, so we’re sending a shout out to all those Dead Heads and Dogfish Heads by making them a driving force behind this beer.”

Did you trade a bushel of fresh clementines for tickets to a two-night-stand at Long Beach Arena? Or maybe your dad first laid eyes on your mom sipping a cup of green tea in the parking lot of the legendary Cornell ‘77 show? Jog your memory, tell the story, and suggest the ingredient at the heart of that story. You could help bring this counterculture collaboration to life.

Suggestions for American Beauty’s final ingredient will be taken online in December. A panel from the Dogfish Head and Grateful Dead teams will pick the ingredient they feel works best in the context of a strong pale ale recipe. The brewery and band hope to invite the fan who suggested the ingredient to Dogfish’s coastal Delaware brewpub in the spring of 2013 to help brew a test batch.

“My wife, Mariah, and I went to our first Dead show together in the summer of ‘91,” says Calagione, “and I’ve been listening to Workingman’s Dead and Shakedown Street, two of the earliest albums I ever owned, on my morning kayak trips. It’s amazing how timeless those albums are.”

American Beauty is expected to hit taps and shelves throughout Dogfish’s 27-state distribution network in October 2013. Stay tuned to www.dogfish.com for details on how to be a part of this grassroots brew.

Discovery cans Brew Masters; is ‘Big Beer’ to blame?

April 02, 2011 By: mike Category: Craft beer, Oddities

Brew Masters logo
Well, it’s official. Discovery Channel’s show about the craft beer business, Brew Masters, has been canned.

The  web has been abuzz  this week with accusations that “Big Beer” threatened to pull ads from the Discovery Channel if Brew Masters was kept on the air. Brew Masters stars Dogfish Head’s Sam Caligione, who takes viewers across the globe in search of exotic ingredients for his beers.

The controversy started with a couple of tweets from the Travel Channel’s Anthony Bourdain, host of No Reservations. (No Reservations shares the same production team as Brewmasters.)

Anthony Bourdain's tweets

Other sources have since confirmed the cancellation. Five episodes have aired, though a sixth episode of Brew Masters focusing on a New York rooftop brewpub involving Caligione, may still air when the eatery opens this summer.


Anyway, if you got hooked on Brew Masters, you’ll appreciate Brew Minions, a parody from the guys at Ska Brewing.

It’s 22-minutes long, which is too damn long. It could use a good edit. But Caligione, who is the butt of many of the jokes, was good-natured enough to make a cameo in the video, and it’s worth checking out.

Brew Minions, A Parody from David Thibodeau on Vimeo.

Dogfish Head ending distribution in Tennessee, Indiana, Wisconsin and Rhode Island

March 11, 2011 By: grant Category: Beer in the news, Breweries, Craft beer, Memphis

Dogfish Head craft beer
Sam Calagione just posted the answer to the question a bunch of us Tennesseans have been asking all morning since we heard the rumor. Distributors in Tennessee, Indiana, Wisconsin and Rhode Island have been notified they’ll be getting no more Dogfish Head craft beers.

Dogfish Head just can’t keep up with production to continue distribution everywhere it was previously available.

So it is bittersweet for us to announce that we are pulling out of, or limiting some of our core beers from, a number of states. Yes this sucks. The glass-half-full view is that we (and a handful of other U.S. craft breweries making similar moves) have to do this because your numbers the number of U.S. drinkers buying and enjoying craft beer – are growing so quickly! [source]

It was a little unclear from Sam’s blog post if distribution was going to totally end in Tennessee or it was just going to be more limited, but Terry DeRanzo at Southwest Beverage and Distributing has confirmed Dogfish Head is completely pulling out.

“We’re very disappointed,” she said. No doubt.

She said Southwest has been out of Dogfish’s low-gravity brews for about a month, though they’ve got some high-gravity Aprihop left, which you might be able to find at Busters, Joe’s Wine & Liquors, Natalies Liquor Warehouse or Stellar Cellar. You might still be able to find low-gravity Dogfish at grocery stores like Whole Foods and Freshmarket.

(UPDATE: Just to clarify, these stores I listed are not an exhaustive list of where Dogfish Head is available. There are several stores in Memphis and Jackson that sell Dogfish Head.)

Dogfish has a “Fish Finder” online to help you figure out where you can get it, but it hasn’t been updated yet.

You said it, Sam. This sucks.

I guess I’d better go make a beer run. (Post-beer-run pic below.)

Our Dogfish Head haul