Friday, March 02, 2012

brew excitement

Duuuuuudes, ransacked broke the biggest beer story of beer week.  Kupros (somehow) scored a keg of Pliny the Younger and became the scalpers of the beer world and tried to completely gouge people for it.  Now they are banned from Russian River Beers for life!  Swift justice.

I am so stoked about the event at Pangaea tonight (see list of beers below), starts at 6.  My only qualm is how I am going to try all the beers I want on this list without getting completely trashed.  That calls for willpower that I really don't have when confronted with so much delicious brew.  I want quaff the Cantillon Lou Pepe Kriek,  the Jolly Pumpkin Maricaibo Especial, at least one of the Mikkeller collabos, the very delicious smoked beer from Norwegian brewery Haanbryggeriet, the classic fresh, hoppy brau Taras Boulba, fuckkkk. All of them, just about. And the keg of Younger might still be in effect.   I will fortify myself with a sandwich from Gunther's first.

Or maybe a sandwich from Fat Face, because Bows is having an art opening tonight: Verge artist Ianna Frisby's embroidery pieces.  Also, bathroom polaroids by Sarah Barkawi.  

I might be at Bows a lot this weekend, cuz Hummel's hangover waffle brunch is on Sunday.  Also on Sunday, Rob is doing a very smart thing at Pangaea and having a keg blowout of all his leftover stuff from Beer Week.  Hopefully there are some discounts to be had?  At least he won't charge you 45 bucks for a glass of Pliny the Younger!

37 comments:

beckler said...

oh yeah, and big thumbs up on Wanderlust. Be sure to see it medicated. Paul Rudd is such a fox.

Anonymous said...

That's great! Not "Wanderlust", the Russian River thing.

-DB

Anonymous said...

Ha! That's pretty great about the Kupros RRBC ban. Reminiscent of them last year refusing to sell growlers of Pliny the Younger to go after they started cropping up on Ebay the year before.

-skpr

Isaac said...

Thanks for the love.

-Isaac

ranSACkedmedia.com

ninja said...

now i just have to try and remember to hit Burgers and Brew at 2:30 on monday

Anonymous said...

Nice to see the Maloof burger make a comeback for Beer Week.

beckler said...

Woah woah woah, Isaac. Chill with the "l" word, man. I hardly know you.

Anonymous said...

Kupros did some major damage control including deleting negative comments about the ridiculously lame "package deal" idea on their FB page. Now all the comments are like "wow, that was such a great deal, why were people all pissed, how odd!" also, they're now selling it for $1.
I've been enjoying hating this place from afar.

JD

smitty said...

Bill and I went by to see if we could get a glass for a buck. They ignored us for a bit. When she deemed we had waited long enough she came over. I asked and some guy said it wouldn't be until Sunday at 6pm.

We still wanted a couple Bloody Marys but she walked off and started ignoring us again. Maybe because I made a crack about how they knocked 30 bucks off the price. We left without anything. I guess after spending the last year in Saudi Arabia, I have no patience for lack of customer service.

Anyway, I'm sure it'll bother them all night that I'm not a fan of them. I haven't eaten or drank anything there. Is it worth going back?

Anonymous said...

Why is Russian River dictating markup price to retailers?

If people are going to be outraged at anybody, it should be at Russian River for limiting supply. Kupros couldn't have charged $31 a pour if PTY wasn't so scarce.

Kupros tried to make some windfall profits. This is a bad thing? Last time I checked, maximizing profit is what businesses do. It's not like there is a moral dilemma here. Nobody is having to chose between PTY and high blood pressure medication. There are plenty of excellent, $5.00 a pull craft beers to be had in Sacto, so nobody is even being deprived of pleasure of drinking $5.00 a pull craft beers.

If marking-up hard-to-find alcoholic beverages were something to get up in arms about, then Darrell Corti should be rode out of town on a rail.

smitty said...

Anon, you're the reason why we can't have nice things.

Anonymous said...

If anybody plans to give a public comment before the city council tomorrow, I urge you to tell the council that they are mortgaging the public's assets for no good reason, because the Kings can raise the money themselves on Kickstarter. You will probably have to briefly explain what Kickstarter is.

There is still a chance we can stop the arena plan, but we need desperately to re-frame the debate. I would make this comment myself, but I'll be at work during the meeting.

P.S., the Kings using Kickstarter is a "joke," but the point it makes is serious. If the people of this city are in reality willing to keep the Kings at the cost of buying a arena, then they will pay for it. The city doesn't need to be the middleman.

beckler said...

goddamnit, comment eaten!

You're right, anonymous, Russian River should totally go the route of Coors and Budweiser and make as much beer as the public demands.

Russian River has an interest in controlling price gouging because if a customer who doesn't know Russian River's deal (which many don't and don't care about) and they spy a 40 dollar beer, they are apt to be left with a bad taste in their mouth about the brewery.

As for the arena, when I saw the TWO editorials about it in the Sunday Bee I felt like it is just a done deal. Everyone involved knows the majority of the public doesn't want this, but it's going to be rammed through. Look for the reporting about massive cost overruns to start in about two years. Who could have known?

Anonymous said...

What Kupros did was not at all in keeping with the spirit of how Russian River operates. Russian River does not "limit the supply" as such. It is a product best made in small batches and the amount of ingredients that go into a triple IPA make it hard to sell at a reasonable price, yet they do. RR makes it and sells it relatively cheap for love of brewing. They dont have the capacity to meet demand on this and they don't want to expand. Shock! Horror! A successful business that isn't driven to constantly expand and maximize profits! They're happy with what they have and keep it small to maintain quality. And they have every right to determine who they sell to; if some prick is going against the spirit of the thing they have every right to yank their product because they don't want to be associated with that. They don't dictate selling price, they're just careful about who they associate with.
Judging by your comments this is an approach that is foreign to you.
JD

Anonymous said...

Hey Anonymous, can you just come up with a signature so you can be differentiated from all the other anonymi? I have a few suggestions: "blueberry", "Casper", and "Garfunkel". Or just pick one you like. No one has to know who you are, but it's nice to be able to separate you from the masses. You'll thank me if the Bee troll ever comes back.
Gbomb

Anonymous said...

Yes, craft breweries like Russian River are the model of progressive business practice. That's why they are all unionized, whereas corporate giants like Miller and Anheuser-Busch...wait, what is that? Miller and Anheuser-Busch are unionized? And Russian River isn't?

It's amusing that you're all falling for the "we're just a couple cool dudes brewing for the people" propaganda. Rebel sell, indeed.

But if Russian River wants to sell your self-image back to you, and you're willing to buy it, great.

What bothers me is that Kupros is getting singled out for abuse when you wouldn't apply the same standard to Corti Bros or, for that matter, any fine dining establishment that buys food as cheap as it can, then marks it as high as the market will bear.

beckler said...

Show me something as egregious as what Kupros did, and I will bitch about it. What, is Corti marking up some obscure port by 300%? If you have the facts, spill 'em?

Anonymous said...

Way to shift the argument to something else. Unionization has nothing to do with this argument; and whether or not small businesses should unionize is a complicated argument. And RR has never done any marketing I've witnessed other than word of mouth. Their quality does the marketing. Of course they must do some marketing. I'm not that ignorant, but I haven't witnessed it.
Your comments only reinforce that within your bubble the notion of a business that chooses to remain small because the quality of their product is the number one priority is absurd. It's not "progressive business" it's just this: some people start a business because they love what they make and/or sell. Others do so because they think they can make a lot of money selling something. The first type often improves my quality of life and adds something unique and interesting to the world. The second kind usually panders to the lowest common denominator. There's nothing wrong with it. I just don't happen to like it much.
But I could be wrong. Maybe RR's approach is indeed all a clever marketing ploy to sell my self image back to me and they don't really care about beer.
JD

Anonymous said...

I've actually seen about a 200% mark-up on a can of Campbell's condensed tomato soup at Corti.

I just figured if you're an elderly East Sac woman who'd rather pay the mark-up at Corti instead of walking over to the Savemart, that's her privilege.

I see that mark-up is mostly due to small demand and not utilizing economy of scale like a supermarket. It's also corollary to the higher prices found scattered corner markets thoughout the mid/downtown area.

The big difference is that they're not over-pricing high demand scarce products.

If I take issue with the price of Maroschino liqueur at Corti, I'll go online to get it. Just as I often point out where things can be bought cheapest, it's only fair for others to point out where things are overpriced.

-skpr

Anonymous said...

"Maybe RR's approach is indeed all a clever marketing ploy to sell my self image back to me and they don't really care about beer."

Or maybe both could things could be true. Are you really shocked that craft breweries market themselves in line with the sensibilities of their "bourgeois bohemian" customers?

"What, is Corti marking up some obscure port by 300%? If you have the facts, spill 'em?"

You're missing the point. Marking up prices as high as they can is what retail businesses do, and this goes double for businesses that deal in gourmet food/bev. If you want Sacto to keep these type of businesses around, then it is not in your interest to applaud a holier-than-thou wholesaler who punishes a retailer for trying to make a buck.

--blueberry

Anonymous said...

If you've been to the Russian River pub you'll know that the serious cherry on top of their awesome beer is that it's very affordably priced. Obviously this affordability is important to them, since they clearly put their money where their mouth is.

Some years back (and this may have changed now) they yanked Pliny from BevMo because they couldn't guarantee it would be sold in the cold cases.

I don't live my life in such a cynical bubble that I assume this is all selling some sort of lifestyle back to me. I actually believe they care. If other people also think it's cool that RR cares and they gravitate towards the brewery for that reason, then that's a positive side-effect of RR's beliefs. But to suggest they're doing it as some sort of manipuliaive game is a crock as far as I'm concerned. As far as your union crack, again, if you go to the pub you'll recognize the same employee faces year-in year-out. Obviously they make things good for their employees.

You can talk about Corti etc all day but obviously a line was crossed with the Kupro's price or there wouldn't have been the backlash and damage control. People will put up with a lot (especially on luxury items like alcohol & restaurant food) but it looks like $45 for a burger and a PTY exceeds that limit.

Personally I think it's awesome that people called foul on this. Price gouging is exactly what craft beer DOESN'T need. Obviously Vinnie at RR takes the long view & understands this.

-TC

Anonymous said...

Thanks TC, excellent points and I couldn't agree more.

Blueberry, you are the one missing the point. It's a massive exagerration on your part to suggest anyone is against Kupros for trying to make a buck. There's a huge difference between trying to make a buck and outright price gouging.

Most other places had PTY for around $10. Add on a $14 burger and you get $24. So, where was the extra $21 going? Supposedly for the privilege of having happy hour all day, and the chance for one person to get one more PTY. So, you're paying for the privilege of happy hour? That is then no longer happy hour.

This was egregious price gouging, and that definitely should be called out. Also, there is nothing really wrong with being holier-than-thou when you really clearly are holier than thou. It's no longer a pejorative in this case.

JD

Anonymous said...

Blueberry wrote:
"Marking up prices as high as they can is what retail businesses do, and this goes double for businesses that deal in gourmet food/bev."

Clearly in this case they marked up the prices way higher than they really could. That's the whole reason for the backlash.

Then they did this passive aggressive playing the victim thing by reducing it all the way down to $1! Weasels.

Anonymous said...

Poor people having to pay 4 times the normal price for food staples = price gouging.

Middle-class people outraged about a restaurant trying to make a buck off of some really rare craft beer = white whine.

See the difference?

--blueberry

Anonymous said...

Kupros was price gouging. But feel free to continue to patronize a place that chooses to attempt to charge 3 times what everyone else is charging. Let's not infringe their right to be a lame business.

JD

beckler said...

Now you've brought unions and race into an argument about beer. What's next? Abortions? Terry Schiavo?

Anonymous said...

I think fellow victim Rush Limbaugh should be brought in to it next.

TC

Anonymous said...

Useless comment.

All these new found beer fans are lame. I remember downing my first craft brew when horseless carriages first popped up on the farm roads and blimps were the shit. I'm going to have to start chewing up grains and spitting them in a mud bowl and fermenting it just to rebel.

Shawn Sumtin

P.S. Miss you skipper

Anonymous said...

I know it is difficult to have your opinions challenged, especially when you are used to everyone agreeing with you (the internet, especially, is notorious for steering us into like-minded communities), but I maintain it is good for us. How else are we going to remind ourselves that we might be mistaken or behaving thoughtlessly?

You don't have to be a Rush Limbaugh lover to see that Kupros was unfairly maligned, no matter how comforting that may be to believe.

--blueberry

Anonymous said...

It has nothing to do with comfort.

I'm glad you challenged yourself by ignoring the obviously compelling arguments put forth here. Take comfort in your smugness because your arguments are flimsy.

I promise this will be my last comment on this.

JD

Anonymous said...

poor kupros, they are truly a victim.

Syntax logic error line 43

~shawnsumtin

Anonymous said...

I do feel a little smug about my white whine comment. That was a good one, if I say so myself. Do you know the white whine site btw? Really funny stuff.

http://whitewhine.com/

If you don't take any joy in comment jousting and merely find my arguments stupid and flimsy, well, you are better off not feeding the troll. I hate to admit it, but it's true. And it's no fun for me if you ignore me.

--blueberry

ninja said...

Pliny the Fail?
I went to Burgers and Brew yesterday at 2:20 and the line was already 100+ long. Stood in it anyways, like an idiot, eventhough we calculated that the 5 gallon keg would only fill around 90 of the 8 ounce glasses.
I'll get your next year, Younger, next year!

Anonymous said...

Just wanted to say that I only brought up Rush because he's currently acting unfairly maligned when in fact he has only himself to blame. Similar to Kupro's. I wasn't assuming you were a Rush lover (though the idea that the free market is above any criticism is definitely a neo-conservative trait). If I assumed anything it was that you were friends with the Kupro's people. I also find it amusing that you think a bunch of people agreeing that $45 is absurd for a burger & a beer is some sort of group-think. The fact that someone somewhere is also over-charging for something doesn't change my opinion that that's a ridiculous price.

-TC

Anonymous said...

No, I'm not a Rush fan, and I've never eaten at Kupro's or know anyone associated with the restaurant, but I'm probably more neo-liberal than most of the people on this thread. I use neo-liberal to mean someone who is liberal, but not anti-capitalist. I think markets do a better job of gauging what people want than kings, bureaucrats or even snobby beer makers. Scarcity forces us to make trade-offs ($45 beer or a new pair of pants), and markets give us more freedom of choice.

That said, I'm not a status quo guy. There is no reason we need to be working as much we do. A 3 or 4 day work week sounds about right to me. There is no reason we need to be filling our landfills with all the stupid stuff we buy. Experiences, not things, make us happy. There is no reason we can't have a decent universal healthcare system. Etc, etc.

I hope this helps to clarify where I am coming from.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
beckler said...

blah blah blah