Brewery Memberships

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by WestCoastBrew2, Mar 7, 2013.

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  1. WestCoastBrew2

    WestCoastBrew2 Initiate (0) Dec 24, 2011 Vermont

    I spent last weekend wine tasting with my wife and did not know so many wineries have club memberships that include benefits as access to special releases, quarterly shipments, free tastings, discounts on memorabilia.........

    I know that The Bruery has the Reserve Society and Crooked Stave has Cellar Reserve membership, but why don't more breweries do something like this? Are any of you members of a local brewery? If so, what are the benefits of membership and how would you tweak the program?
  2. Clonies720

    Clonies720 Initiate (0) Oct 24, 2012 Texas

    They may be illegal in some states. I'm in TX and a reserve society would be illegal as breweries are not allowed to sell directly to the public.
  3. shredder83

    shredder83 Devotee (423) Feb 21, 2013 Illinois
    Beer Trader

    I wish fff had one, all these dicks around here who apparently don't work during the day go snatch up all of their ba releases and then try and sell them on CL for double leaving real BA's like myself screwed. Some kind of membership/loyalty program would help me get my hands on some of those limited releases for once.
  4. KevSal

    KevSal Savant (951) Oct 17, 2010 California
    Beer Trader

    my local brewery has a membership. they give you discounts, free beer tickets on fridays, special growler fills not available to the public, a dinner party with all the members, special events, stuff like that.

    it started out more for home brewers tho becuase you used to be able to use their system to brew. thats an awesome perk
  5. WestCoastBrew2

    WestCoastBrew2 Initiate (0) Dec 24, 2011 Vermont

    Do you think breweries in those states could team up with local retailers to have a brewery/retailer membership of some sort where the beer is picked up at the retailers location?
  6. zoober911

    zoober911 Aspirant (261) Jul 31, 2012 New York
    Beer Trader

    Ironically enough I read about the membership for The Bruery this morning. All I got from the site was that you are allotted three brews per quarter. They are designated by the brewery and can be shipped or directly picked up. I believe you also receive a 10% discount on your purchase. Unfortunately for me, I emailed them and got clarification on the shipping portion and they cannot ship outside of California at this point. Unfortunately.
  7. duceswild

    duceswild Meyvn (1,283) Feb 8, 2010 Maryland
    Subscriber Beer Trader

    That is their preservation society. They have two others Reserve Society and if you spend enough Hoarders Society.
  8. Clonies720

    Clonies720 Initiate (0) Oct 24, 2012 Texas

    Not sure of the legality of that, but if I had to take a wild guess, I'd say no.

    Our laws are pretty antiquated. Currently, there are 3 bills aiming to expand craft brewer's rights that bring them closer in line with the freedom that TX wineries enjoy. From my point-of-view, it'll be a few years before TX BA's see the change we desire, free and fair competition in the market (what a crazy thought, right?). I think these 3 bills are a step in the right direction.
    WestCoastBrew2 likes this.
  9. BottleCaps80

    BottleCaps80 Zealot (595) Jan 12, 2013 Iowa
    Beer Trader

    There are a few Iowa breweries I know have memberships. Toppling Goliath has a membership to their "Mug Club" which is $50/year and gets you: 20oz mugs at the tap room (eveyone else gets 16oz pints for the same price), first "dibs" on any of their specialty brews and limited growler fills, your "mugshot" added to the taproom wall so everyone knows how awesome you are, $10 growler refills (normal price is $14) and a free beer on your birthday. I just wish I lived near their taproom...I'd be all over that!

    Peace Tree Brewing Co. in Iowa has a membership to their "Treehouse Club" for $50/year and gets you 10% off all of their beers and merchandise at their taproom and invites to member only events/tasting throughout the years. Not really worth it to me.
    tylerstravis likes this.
  10. fatsnowman22

    fatsnowman22 Initiate (0) Feb 2, 2011 Nevada
    Beer Trader

    Its simple, beer hasnt caught up with wine yet. Supporting breweries is the way for this to happen!
  11. williamjbauer

    williamjbauer Champion (889) Jan 17, 2012 Colorado
    Beer Trader

    I love this idea. Founders has a membership with discounts at the brewpub
  12. benbking

    benbking Disciple (305) Dec 11, 2009 Rhode Island
    Beer Trader

    The one I keep thinking of and not doing: because I have no car, is Smuttynose.
    But a lot of breweries have them, just surf their websites and poke around.
    Having to rent a car to go up from Boston for every release raises the price a bit much. Also They have a pint club, which is great, but not something I'd use enough not being local. I'm glad you posted this thread though because I have to remember to go get a case of Really Old Brown Dog in April.
  13. Flight0011

    Flight0011 Initiate (0) Jan 8, 2013 Washington

    I would be the first to sign up if Russian River started a beer club! I get my favorite wine to my house why can't I get my favorite beer?
    WestCoastBrew2 likes this.
  14. UCLABrewN84

    UCLABrewN84 Poo-Bah (12,188) Mar 18, 2010 California

    What brewery?
  15. KevSal

    KevSal Savant (951) Oct 17, 2010 California
    Beer Trader

    Devils Canyon in Belmont, not the greatest of breweries but they've got a few good gems.
    My day job is right across the street so sometimes I pop by to get some growler fills after work. Canned full boar is nowhere near as good as growler full boar :wink:
  16. ricochet173

    ricochet173 Initiate (184) Jul 6, 2011 Quebec (Canada)
    Beer Trader

    Not in the United States, but "Les Trois Mousquetaires" in Quebec make some amazing German style beers:

    Their Sticke Alt and Doppelbock are very, very, very good.
  17. BottleCaps80

    BottleCaps80 Zealot (595) Jan 12, 2013 Iowa
    Beer Trader

    Sorry...sarcasm isn't always apparent over the internet. There are LOTS of great German style beers being made in the US. :wink:
  18. Mothergoose03

    Mothergoose03 Poo-Bah (1,866) May 30, 2005 Michigan
    Supporter Subscriber

    I'm going to take an educated guess that around half of the US craft breweries offer a mug club membership. Cost for membership and the benefits received seem to vary a lot, and state laws may have some effect on this variability. My membership was a one time cost of $35, and it gets me a 22 oz. pour for the price of an Imperial pint (Arcadia uses Imperial pints for Tier 1 beers), plus every 6th beer is $1.

    Does anyone else have a guess at the percentage level of mug club availability?
    craigo19 likes this.
  19. ilikebeer03

    ilikebeer03 Crusader (789) Oct 17, 2012 Texas

    I'm in Texas too. There is some legislation going right now that will hopefully change this.
  20. RoninTK3

    RoninTK3 Aspirant (234) Nov 12, 2012 New Hampshire
    Beer Trader

    I was in the imperial pint club at Portsmouth brewery when i was living in New Hampshire. It's$35 a year and you get imperial pints instead of pints and pints on beers they do smaller pours of. You also get discounts in the store,a gift card after spending so much, and a kick ass Christmas party.
  21. youbrewidrink

    youbrewidrink Initiate (0) Apr 9, 2009 Vermont
    Beer Trader

    One of the biggest drawbacks for the brewers is the onsite storage and inventory control of member purchases. I do both the CS & Bruery and I have wonderful trustees, but I can't imagine what it takes on the brewery end to manage that mess.
  22. Photekut

    Photekut Initiate (0) Mar 31, 2006 Tennessee

    Jackie O's does this too, but you had to be early in line at one release over a year ago to sign up.
    I do not believe they have opened it to many if any newcomers.

    You get 6 exclusive beers and a few other things.

    Locally the Downtown Bar and Grill in Knoxville has a mug club that gets you discounts etc but I have not been there in several years.
  23. WickedSluggy

    WickedSluggy Devotee (400) Nov 21, 2008 Texas
    Beer Trader

    Hopefully Texas SB518 passes: Authorizes a production brewery under 225,000 barrels of annual production to sell up to 5,000 barrels annually of beer produced by the brewery to ultimate consumers for consumption on the premise of the brewery.
  24. Clonies720

    Clonies720 Initiate (0) Oct 24, 2012 Texas

    Which is why I want it to pass, because the next logical step is to sell for take-away off-premise consumption.
  25. Socalbeerlover

    Socalbeerlover Initiate (0) Jul 12, 2011 California

    Brew Rebellion is opening a small tasting room in Yucaipa ca because of their Founders society that has helped them raise funds.100 members 250 dollars each lifetime membership.
  26. AAlchemist

    AAlchemist Initiate (0) Aug 12, 2012 Arizona
    Beer Trader

    In the past Lost Abbey had one. Saints and Sinners Club. I really wish they would bring that back but as was already mentioned it is a logistical nightmare to manage all of that. I know the Bruery has had some problems in the past and while they seem to work with customers the amount of effort that goes into the Reserve/Hoarders is huge. Not to mention all the cold storage you need to have. Its one of the reasons i'm willing to pay a premium for their bottles.

    Also i believe Hill Farmstead did some sort of membership this year but it was VERY exclusive "Collected Works" and done by lottery

    Old Redwood Brewing Company (just north of Russian River) is apparently doing one this year as well but i've never had any of their beer. I will have to check it out next time i travel to Russian River.


    Burlington Beer Company is another
    Nigh Shift Brewing is another
    Rumors That Cigar City will have one....but again Rumors.
    Would love to hear about any others that might be out there?
    beerindex and nsheehan like this.
  27. otispdriftwood

    otispdriftwood Crusader (736) Dec 9, 2011 Colorado
    Subscriber Beer Trader

    I don't care to belong to any club that would have me as a member.
  28. BeastLU

    BeastLU Disciple (326) Dec 20, 2012 Virginia

    Dumb ass laws and logistics.
    BPGEFL likes this.
  29. craigo19

    craigo19 Disciple (329) Oct 12, 2009 Michigan
    Supporter Beer Trader

    I belong to Dark Horse's and Wolverine State Brewing's mug clubs because they are lifetime membership's for just a one time cost. With no brew pubs close to me, an annual membership other than the Michigan Brewers Guild just doesn't justify itself.
  30. mrcraft

    mrcraft Meyvn (1,384) Dec 15, 2012 California
    Beer Trader

    It's going a step further now. There's a new brewery in Northern California that has not released a single beer that was selling memberships for $300, similar in structure to The Bruery's Reserve Society membership. When I saw this I thought it was crazy to spend money on an unknown entity. You never know though, they may hit a home run, and those initial bottles may turn out to be whales. I think that's what people are banking on.
  31. SammyJaxxxx

    SammyJaxxxx Poo-Bah (1,738) Feb 23, 2012 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    I would join the Bruery Reserve Society but I don't have someone out there to be a trustee.
  32. Mothergoose03

    Mothergoose03 Poo-Bah (1,866) May 30, 2005 Michigan
    Supporter Subscriber

    With a deal like that a person needs to ask for a Prospectus first and then ownership stock when spending that kind of cash. :wink:
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