By Any Other Name: The Truth About Private Label Beers

Discussion in 'Article Comments' started by BeerAdvocate, Aug 16, 2017.

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  1. BeerAdvocate

    BeerAdvocate Admin (17,207) Aug 23, 1996 California
    Staff Society

  2. Vegasboop

    Vegasboop Initiate (0) Aug 15, 2017 Nevada

    Gordon Biersch Brewing Company is a stand alone craft beer brewery located in San Jose, CA. The owners sold off the restaurant side of their company in December 1999 and that is now called Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurant. I worked for the corporate office for 14 years before retiring. Just wanted to clear up the statement about GB and the Trader Joe's product.
    LuskusDelph, Badfish and Keene like this.
  3. Squire

    Squire Poo-Bah (2,803) Jul 16, 2015 Mississippi
    Society Trader

    It's not a bad idea if the brewer can keep up the quality and the restaurant(s) can move the volume. I remember some brewed for the famous Chicago restaurant Bergoff"s though I've forgotten who the brewer was 20+ years ago.
  4. aleyeast

    aleyeast Aspirant (243) Sep 15, 2004 South Carolina

    So a brewer is brewing beer for a customer, burn him at the stake.

    Who is shopping for craft beer at Walmart?????
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  5. Stagester

    Stagester Initiate (0) Oct 22, 2013 Idaho

    I get the problem at Walmart or other stores but for the brewer its definitely a win. For a brewery not at capacity you have to contract brew to keep the brewing going, employment full time and money coming in.
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  6. Sabtos

    Sabtos Poo-Bah (10,363) Dec 15, 2015 Ohio
    Society Trader

    The thing is it's not like they're just making the wort for someone else to do their own thing with, they're straight up making and packaging the entire beer. Why can't there be transparency to that? A simple collaboration statement right on the front?
  7. EvenMoreJesus

    EvenMoreJesus Initiate (0) Jun 8, 2017 Pennsylvania

    While I understand why people might be looking for manufacturing information, the companies involved have no duty to put anything more on the label than the TTB requires. In other words, transparency only works if the companies involved want to be transparent.
  8. AZBeerDude72

    AZBeerDude72 Initiate (0) Jun 10, 2016 Arizona

    It all comes down to education. At the end of the day I do my homework before I buy. If I see something on the shelf that seems out of place or I am clueless on I make note and look it up. I then decide from there if I will buy. Most of the issues with transparency can be alleviated with a little homework. With that said so long as the product is top end and all would anyone really care, if the beer rocks I am drinking it... :stuck_out_tongue:
  9. jesskidden

    jesskidden Poo-Bah (2,530) Aug 10, 2005 New Jersey
    Society Trader

    Even older (and more well-known) than the Red Sox beer, was a beer brewed by Anheuser-Busch for St. Louis' Carl Conrad & Co., that they called "Budweiser".

    Huber brewed the Berghoff beers for years (starting around 1960). After Fred Huber bought back his family brewery in 1989, he partnered with Berghoff and the brewery was renamed "Berghoff-Huber Brewing Co." and the Berghoff line replace their sold-off Augsburger brand as their superpremium flagship brand. AFAIK, the Berghoff beers are still brewed, now totally separated from Minhas (which bought Huber).
    #9 jesskidden, Aug 17, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2017
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  10. EvenMoreJesus

    EvenMoreJesus Initiate (0) Jun 8, 2017 Pennsylvania

    Not that this is the case with 100% of these situations, but many of these beers aren't "collaborations" as much as they are "rebrandings" of current beers.
  11. Dandrewjohn

    Dandrewjohn Initiate (140) Apr 13, 2013 Texas

    I was interested to find that Trader Joe's is made by Gordon Biersch, as I had never heard of them and it turns out to be a pretty interesting business. And I don't really see how it's intentional deception. After all, TJs doesn't make their own coffee or milk or cheese or practically anything else for that matter either.
  12. moshea

    moshea Initiate (0) Jul 16, 2007 Michigan

    I have had some great contract beers from Trader Joe's over the years.

    The Unibroue ones are a great value.
    DonicBoom likes this.
  13. Redneckwine

    Redneckwine Initiate (0) Dec 3, 2013 Washington

    Me and many others, otherwise they wouldn't be carrying (a ton of) it. I don't know about you guys, but every walmart in my area actually has a pretty kickass selection of craft. I'd say nearly 1\2 an aisle dedicated to it between the fridge and shelf. Maybe the craft stock varies regionally? However, freshness can definitely be an issue there. I'm thinking most folks that are buying craft beer there (including me) buy it more on an impulse level, coming in for groceries or some odds n' ends, lured in by the promise of a reasonably fresh sixer.

    As for the transparency issue on house labels, as long as the quality is on point, it just doesn't bother me at all, and doesn't seem any different than anything else sold at grocery stores. Stores themselves manufacture very little to nothing of what they sell.
    DonicBoom and LuskusDelph like this.
  14. Ostpies

    Ostpies Initiate (0) Nov 3, 2015 New Zealand (Aotearoa)

    Agreed, and it says "Unibroue" on the bottles.
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