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Stone Brewery Takes Up The Challenge: An American in Europe?

on 15/02/11 at 11:33 am


Escondido outfit would be first U.S. craft brewery to operate in Europe.

What ales the European beer scene?

And will the cure come from Escondido? There, Stone Brewing is finalizing plans to become the first American craft brewer with its own European plant, operating in Belgium or Germany.

“They make great beer but they aren’t really driving anything,” said Randy Clemens, Stone’s public relations coordinator. “Germany and Belgium have gotten stagnant.”

In those nations, with their proud beer culture, that may sound like a smear from someone drunk on Arrogant Bastard Ale. Last summer, when Stone co-founders Greg Koch and Steve Wagner announced their intent to invade the Old World, some saw it as an example of California chutzpah.

“I find it laughable that Mr. Koch believes he’s going to move into Europe and tell them what they want,” read one post on an Internet chat board. “I admire his gumption but I am incredibly leery of his arrogance.”

If not arrogant, this project is at least unprecedented, the first time a craft brewery from the New World has opened in the Old World.

{Full story via San Diego Union-Tribune}

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