Do any of your local brewery taprooms permit a mix-a-four/six of their beers?

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by JackHorzempa, Jan 19, 2023.

  1. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa (735) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
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    There has been some discussion in the beer is more expensive thread on the topic of creating our own mix (e.g., a mixed four-pack or mixed six-pack) of their packaged beers as a to go purchase. There was further discussion by some BAs that they would be willing to pay an ‘upcharge’ to make this purchase (e.g., if one beer is $20 a four-pack and the other three beers are of a lesser price per four-pack they would be willing to pay $20+ for the mixed four-pack).

    The idea of selling a mix-a-four or mix-a-six with a reasonable ‘upcharge’ at the taproom sounds like a business opportunity for the breweries. Just wondering how widespread this might be elsewhere.

    Cheers!

    P.S. FWIW, I am personally not aware that any of the craft breweries local to me that sell in this manner.

    @bubseymour @jonphisher
     
  2. Redrover

    Redrover (0) Jan 18, 2003 Wisconsin
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    Elmhurst Brewery (Elmhurst, IL) allows you to mix beers and there are no additional costs.

    Just tell them what you want and they hand make the 4 pack of 16 oz cans for you. Price depends on the beers chosen (BA Stouts are more per can).
     
  3. bubseymour

    bubseymour (1,065) Oct 30, 2010 Maryland
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    I know in MD, Sapwood Cellers did it once (4 different IPAs in a mixed 4 pack) but then next time I was there they didn’t offer it. No other breweries I’ve been to offers it. I asked once at a local brewery and just got a “we just don’t do that” anwser. Just doesn’t seem like any extra work or inefficiency. Question: Do the canning lines at most of these small breweries put those plastic rings on top of the 4 packs automated or is that a manual process?
     
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  4. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa (735) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
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    Was that a factory constructed mix pack or did customers get to select the four beers?
    In every small brewery that I toured (a half-dozen or so) the plastic cap application was a manual process.

    But even if there was automation to do this it is relatively easy to remove cans from the plastic can holder and 'reassemble' four cans under a holder. And as discussed above this effort could be readily 'covered' by an 'upcharge'.

    Cheers!
     
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  5. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa (735) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
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    Is the can price per brand just 1/4th of the four-pack price?

    For example if the four-packs price per brand was 16, 18, 20 and 22 and you got one of each would the mixed four-pack prices be $19.00?

    Cheers!
     
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  6. jgido759

    jgido759 (0) Oct 7, 2014 New Jersey

    I believe that Jersey Girl in Hackettstown was doing this for a while. Wasn't pre-packaged, you got to pick your beers from what was available. Don't know if they still offer it, though. . .
     
  7. Spade

    Spade (465) Mar 27, 2006 Pennsylvania
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    Victory in Parkesburg does/did this, and I think it was a flat fee or maybe a set price per brew. Been a while since I've been there but I remember thinking it was pretty straightforward.
     
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  8. Resistance88

    Resistance88 (600) Apr 9, 2015 California
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    is it a mix a six if they still charge individual prices per single or does it have to be an average of all 4 prices
     
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  9. ManforallSaisons

    ManforallSaisons (0) Mar 20, 2008 Belgium

    What a missed opportunity at any place that doesn't. I'm sure they have reasons, but SMH, what better way to get people to fall in love with your stuff.
     
  10. donspublic

    donspublic (790) Aug 4, 2014 Texas
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    I visited Hold Out brewery in Austin, probably dropped about $60 on draft while there with family. On leaving I was going to grab some to go and was torn on what to get and they offered to do a mix 4 pack. I normally don't like asking this, but since it was requested I jumped on it. In my case I think all were priced approx the same per 4 pack so it was no difference in cost.
     
  11. cryptichead

    cryptichead (1,010) Jul 3, 2014 Illinois
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    Blue Stallion in Lexington KY had a fridge of singles and you can make your own packs to go
     
  12. IMFletcher

    IMFletcher (630) May 2, 2014 Kentucky
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    I believe each brewery in Kentucky (at least Lex/Lou) have the choice to offer mixed packs. Of the breweries that package enough for this to be a useful option, only West Sixth and Country Boy do not offer this in Lexington.
     
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  13. cryptichead

    cryptichead (1,010) Jul 3, 2014 Illinois
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    I'm totally willing to pay a premium for a mixed pack of singles...I'll take variety (or option of variety) over quantity of the same beer. I don't understand why more places don't have this option especially since they can probably make a higher margin on it to compensate for the extra labor...I've been trying to convince my local store to get into singles. He's open to it but needs more fridge room
     
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  14. papposilenus

    papposilenus (950) Jun 21, 2014 New Hampshire
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    Tree House used to sell everything by the single can. They’ve gone to four-pack pricing since the expansion or, in a few instances, two-packs - which is weird because they still give you the cans loose anyway.

    Locally, West L.A. Beer sells loosies or at least they did last time I was there, back in the fall I guess. Post & Beam often has four of their cans that they let you make into a mixed four-pack. I think I remember that Stoneface sold loosies last time I was there.

    I wish everyone would. I can’t see why it would be a particular hardship for breweries to stock their coolers with loose cans rather than, or in addition to, packs.
     
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  15. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa (735) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
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    Do you think more brewery taprooms would offer mix-a-four/six if more customers requested them?

    Maybe it is incumbent on all of us to deliver this message to our local craft breweries?

    Cheers!

    @jonphisher
     
  16. cryptichead

    cryptichead (1,010) Jul 3, 2014 Illinois
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    My guess is that breweries are concerned that selling singles would lead to a drop in volume. Maybe some industry folks can weigh in on this.
     
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  17. IMFletcher

    IMFletcher (630) May 2, 2014 Kentucky
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    Same.

    Also, it's a lot easier for me to create a sampler to send in trades. How many different sixers am I going to buy just to send a buddy a tick box? Not many. But will I pay $16 for a mixed six instead of $12 for a six pack? Hell yes.
     
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  18. BBThunderbolt

    BBThunderbolt (1,530) Sep 24, 2007 Kiribati
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    None of my locals do, which is a huge PITA during BIFs when trying to a lot of different beers to targets.
     
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  19. Giantspace

    Giantspace (625) Dec 22, 2011 Pennsylvania

    I’m pretty sure you can mix up cans at Forest and Main.

    Enjoy
     
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  20. BruChef

    BruChef (295) Nov 8, 2009 New York

    Fox Farm prices all their beer by single cans/bottles. Part of the reason why they are one of the best breweries in the country.
     
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  21. o29

    o29 (450) Sep 29, 2020 Texas
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    Locally, Live Oak lets you choose between their available canned options to create your own custom 6 pack. The price is typically (I think a few dollars, offhand) higher than if you purchase a premade 6 pack from their cooler.

    They have a refrigerator under the counter that they keep their canned beer offerings in, and then they just take the beer from there, put it into a generic version of their standard cardboard 6 pack holder like below that I believe just says "Live Oak Beer".

    [​IMG]

    I've definitely taken advantage of this a few times, though I think I purchase from the cooler more often, primarily because Live Oak releases new taproom beers at a slow enough rate that there usually are not multiple "new to me" canned offerings that I want to try (and I often purchase a flight anyway for drinking at the brewery, at which point I've gotten to try plenty of offerings). So if there is a new beer to me, there's usually only 1-2 at most, and I usually would opt for a 6 pack in that case. Still a great option to have both.

    Cheers! :beers:

    P.S. On a somewhat related note, Live Oak will be hosting their annual Rauchfest tomorrow where they'll have 6 different rauchbiers or smoked beers to choose from, and they'll be selling a prepackaged 6 pack with 1 of each. This is one rare occasion where I really do want 6 different beers in a 6 pack!
     
    #21 o29, Jan 20, 2023
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2023
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  22. thebeers

    thebeers (1,300) Sep 10, 2014 Pennsylvania
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    I’ve seen loose beers at the bottom of the cooler at Human Robot in Jenkintown, so I assume you can buy singles or mix-and-match there, but I’ve never tested that theory.
     
  23. bubseymour

    bubseymour (1,065) Oct 30, 2010 Maryland
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    I’m going to ask questions to the bar keeps/brewery owners etc about this more frequently as to why many small breweries don’t sell cans in singles or mixed packs on future visits. One theory perhaps is that alot of small breweries thrive on their profits from taproom pours (lots of <8% beers served in 12oz pours for $6-8 these days). And if they were selling 16oz single cans for alot less per oz than pouring into a glass they might lose alot of on site drinking (maybe?). Just a theory. I really don’t think it’s extra labor or time. Pouring flights or a growler/crowler fill is substantially more time involved.
     
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  24. jonphisher

    jonphisher (835) Aug 9, 2015 New Jersey
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    To me a place like that offering this would be beneficial, I have only been once but if I end up there again I will take advantage of that.

    If I want to bring home 3 lagers (12 beers) from them = $45 which is insane...Now if I could by 1-2 cans of each at a reasonable mark up, 25%...? I would do so to avoid spending the $45 that it would cost me otherwise.

    I guess this also proves why breweries may not do the mix and match, in this scenario they would've lost money from my purchase.
     
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  25. Harrison8

    Harrison8 (1,500) Dec 6, 2015 Missouri
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    BKS Artisan Ales does. This is largely why I was able to review so many of their beers last year. It's a flat rate cost (the same as a 4pk of any of their DIPAs), and you can put any thing in the 4 pack except for Triple IPAs or Imperial Stouts. They release anywhere from one to five beers a week between their Artisan Ales and Pivo Project labels, so these mixed packs are valuable for ticks and keeping a spread of NE IPAs, WC IPAs, and lagers at hand.

    I believe Alma Mader will also do this, but it's not an advertised thing. They release less quantity, so mixed packs are not as valuable here though. I don't really go anywhere else, so I can't comment on my local scene beyond that.
     
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  26. NorsemanOne

    NorsemanOne (240) Sep 17, 2021 Utah
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    All of the breweries I can think of here in UT sell singles or 6pks. Occasionally there are discount for buying 6 of the same, but otherwise you just pay the per can price and you can mix/match whatever you'd like.

    I'm a big fan personally. Especially day tripping to places that are out of the way.
     
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  27. Amendm

    Amendm (0) Jun 7, 2018 Rhode Island
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    Unfortunately none of the breweries I visit offer a mix pack, and I have yet to see singles for sale, except for 32-oz "Stovepipes" of course.
     
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  28. jmk

    jmk (120) May 8, 2008 Illinois
    Trader

    When I was in Asheville last October, Green Man was the only brewery I visited that allowed a mix six.
    A couple years ago, G5 in Beloit, Wisconsin had a cooler of all singles to mix.
    These are the only two I've come across in my travels. I do wish it was more common.
     
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  29. crazyspicychef

    crazyspicychef (0) Sep 27, 2012 Pennsylvania

    I don't recall ever wanting to take home 6 different beers from the same brewery.
    At most, 2 or 3 really impress me & I'll usually get a gr/cr-owler of the beer I enjoyed the most.
    I've bought singles from a few breweries to go, who, eludes me at the moment.
    I've bought bombers, 6 packs, but never thought to ask for a mix-a-6.
    On my next excursion, I will test this theory and start asking for a mix-a-6 and see what the results are, if I really like the beer.
     
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  30. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa (735) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
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    If the brewery permits you to create your own mix then you could select multiples of the same beer brand. Yesterday I made a mix-a-six at my local Giant supermarket and there were only 3 brands within that pack.

    Cheers!
     
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  31. ChicagoJ

    ChicagoJ (985) Feb 2, 2015 Illinois
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    Setting aside bombers and other limited releases, the only two I recall offering singles or mixed packs are New Glarus (New Glarus, WI) and Empirical Brewing (Chicago, IL - recently closed).

    The only stores I’m familiar with that offer their entire beer inventory as singles are:
    Beer on the Wall is a source for many of my New Beer Weekend / New Beer Sunday selections.
     
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  32. jmk

    jmk (120) May 8, 2008 Illinois
    Trader

    Oh, I just recalled another one. Last summer, before a short visit (little time to visit breweries) to Toronto, I went on Godspeed's website, as I'd heard good things from people up there. They allowed the purchase of any beer in any number. I ordered one of each, 13 different at the time, and had them delivered to a relative's home. Beer was excellent. Next trip I would definitely visit the brewery.
     
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  33. crazyspicychef

    crazyspicychef (0) Sep 27, 2012 Pennsylvania

    Gotta love the Giants mix a 6!
     
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  34. zid

    zid (660) Feb 15, 2010 New York
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    There's a brewer by me that sells pre-made mixed 4 packs. Took a look and each pack had one can of old beer. No thanks.

    There's a different brewer by me that sells $17 four packs of lager. Such beers seem to be the backbone of BA now, but whenever I buy such a pack, I usually feel like I wasted my money once I'm home and trying the beer. I wished they would sell singles so I could try the beer first without spending that much money. I got my wish - they sell singles at $8 a can. No thanks. Be careful what you wish for.
     
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  35. Conteacher

    Conteacher (0) Dec 13, 2010 California

    Slate Town Brewing in Granville, NY offers mixed 4 packs.
     
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  36. jonphisher

    jonphisher (835) Aug 9, 2015 New Jersey
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    Maybe they are on BA?? A small local place just share a post saying you can build your own four pack now.

    The post says nothing of cost per can if it is different or not.
     
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  37. Braunmeister_1943

    Braunmeister_1943 (635) Nov 22, 2020 Pennsylvania
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    Levante Brewing Company now and then offers a premade mixed 4 pack. They have a mixed 4 pack of four of their current stouts. They have also had premade mixed 4 packs of their IPAS, too. I’m not aware that they’ll let you make your own mixed 4 pack.
     
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  38. hudsonvalleyslim

    hudsonvalleyslim (0) May 29, 2003 Massachusetts

    Quite a few sell beer in this this manner in New England. I've recently visited Fox Farm in CT, Martha's Exchange in NH, and Pivotal in RI. All sell by the can as well as 4-packs.And then slap on the plastic-thingy for easy transport. Breweries that don't are missing a good opportunity I think.
     
  39. hudsonvalleyslim

    hudsonvalleyslim (0) May 29, 2003 Massachusetts

    Don't encourage them! Same beer = same price. Just pro-rate it. And they get a free marketing survey, a real-time accounting of what beer their customers really liked.
     
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  40. Rug

    Rug (690) Aug 20, 2018 Massachusetts
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    Proclamation in Warwick, RI offers singles to go which is much appreciated. Forest & Main as well for the one time I visited there (as @Giantspace mentioned). I'm sure there's more but they don't come to mind right now
     
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