Ananke Day 2013 is just a few days away, so I wanted to take the chance to answer some Frequently Asked Questions and wax poetic on a little Freetail philosophy. I was extremely flattered to see Ananke make it on writer Thomas Berg’s list of 20 Most Coveted Craft Beer Releases in America. To even be listed with those other breweries is amazing. It will be interesting to see what impact, if any, that list plays on the crowd Saturday.
Let’s jump right into it.
Q: HOW MANY BOTTLES WILL BE AVAILABLE?
A: We won’t be bottling Ananke until Friday, so we won’t have a final count until then. We are planning around 700 bottles.
Q: WILL THERE BE A BOTTLE LIMIT?
A: Yes. although you may still be able to buy as much as you want. The limit will be determined by the following mathematical formula:
Limit = b/n
b = Final # of bottles available
n = number of people waiting to buy bottles at 10:45 before we start selling them
Not everyone buys their limit, keep in mind. Last year we didn’t sell out on day 1. So, you may be able to get as much as you need. Just depends on the crowd.
Q: WHY THE BOTTLE LIMIT?
A: In the hierarchy of folks who will be purchasing bottles of Ananke we put the people who will be drinking it first and foremost. Anytime that someone makes the effort to come visit our brewery, we want to do our absolute best in order to get them what they came for. On a day like this, that thing is bottles of Ananke. While we understand this may create a less-than-ideal situation for traders, we would rather sell fewer bottles to someone who will enjoy them personally than more bottles to someone who is going to trade them away.
This isn’t a knock on the trading community. As a beer lover, I too enjoy trying different beers I don’t have easy access to. As a beer maker, I love the opportunity to get my beer in front of new people. As an economist, I love the market that has emerged between folks wanting to try new beers. But with that said, the people who came to the brewery to get a bottle come first to me, and when we’ve had sell-outs in the past (especially with lower quantity releases) I have been bummed to see someone miss out on a bottle, then see bottles get shipped off to another part of the country.
I’ll also take the opportunity to say that I recognize the responsibility we share in this situation too, and that’s why we strive to increase bottle numbers when possible. On barrel aged beers, it’s tough because of the physical requirements of barrel aged beers, and that is something we will address with Freetail2 (a new brewery we are working on – more details on that another time). Along those lines, we don’t want to limit bottles to the point where it is not worth the effort of even trying to get any (the 2 bottle limit on Fortuna Roja was right on that fine line last year, and if not for the other 4 beers being released on the same day I’d have not liked to put on a bottle release with such a limited quantity). So, to summarize, we will continue to reasonably limit bottles while doing everything in our power to increase supply to meet demand.
Q: HOW MUCH WILL BOTTLES COST AND WHAT SIZE WILL THEY BE?
A: Ananke will be in our new standard (since we put the bottling line into operation) – 22oz bombers. They will be $11/each plus sales tax.
Q: COULDN’T YOU RAISE THE PRICE?
A: Absolutely. But along the same lines of the bottle limits, we want to make the enjoyment of our beer more of a democratic process, rather than one that creates people who are “in” and people who are “out”. $11 represents what we feel is a fair price given the price structure of our business. I can glance out into the market and quickly get a feel that we could easily charge more for these bottles considering what I see other bottles being sold for, but that isn’t my style. We will continue to price bottles based on what we feel is good for our business and a good value for all of you who support us. You can expect this philosophy from Freetail until I get hit by a bus or lose my mind.
Q: HOW WILL THE SALE GO? HOPEFULLY NOT LIKE THAT DIA DE LA MUERTA 2012 DEBACLE!
A: If you joined us for Dia de La Muerta 2012, you’ll recall we tried something new – having everyone sit down and order from their waitress. Based on your feedback, I’ve decided this was a terrible idea. We’ll be going back to the old way of doing things. Show up, get a number, and then we’ll line everyone up to pay for bottles then take their receipt to pick them up. Though it takes some time to work through the line, I find this the most effective way at doing it, and it gives me an opportunity to say hey to everyone.
Q: BLAH BLAH BLAH… WHAT ABOUT THE BOTTLESHARE?!?!?!
A: Whoever said there is no such thing as a stupid question never anticipated this one. BOTTLE SHARE IS ON!!! Come, have a good time with new friends and old, and have responsible fun.
See you Saturday!