For quite a while now, we’ve been working on different ways to get small quantities of beer to Black Project fans in different markets across the United States. Most of the time, when we attend a beer festival or conference, we just ship beer in advance or bring it with us as cargo. Unfortunately, that is not as easy as it used to be, when we were relatively unknown. We have also added even more beer festivals this year.
Last year, at BeerAdvocate’s “The Return of Belgian Beer Fest” (now called “Wood and Beer Festival”) we were briefly introduced - via a mutual acquaintance at Mystic Brewing - to Annecca at Shelton Brothers Importers. After pouring her some of our beers and getting to know each other, we began a dialogue regarding distribution. Fast forward a few months later to January - after several emails - and we are excited to announce that we have been invited to join the Shelton Brothers portfolio!
For us, this was an easy decision to make. Shelton Brothers is predominantly an importer of many traditional beers from Europe, however they also work with a small group of traditional and quality-minded brewers that are based in U.S. They’re a company that appreciates unique and well-crafted beers and they have a distribution network in place across most of the country that also values and understands these types of beers.
By partnering with Shelton Brothers, we will be able to distribute beer to the areas we are traveling to. We will ship the beer needed for the festival and supporting events, and also a bit extra for limited retail distribution in the area at the same time. This makes the most sense for us as it allows us to be able to easily get beer across state lines to various festivals, plus we will finally be able to tell people that we meet at these festivals where they can get a bottle of our beer.
Black Project will not be available across the entire Shelton network for now, we simply don’t make enough beer to do that. Instead, we will be working with them and their local distributors to deliver small amounts of our products to select markets on a limited basis. This does not change our local distribution.
I want to make a brief note for our local customers: We know that we owe much of our growth and success to your support. We are very much a local company, right down to the yeast used to brew our beers!
Please also know that this will not affect the amount of Black Project beer available locally. As more of our barrel cellar expansion comes on line and more beer available, you will always come first. Despite increasing turnouts for our bottle releases, we have and will continue to work to increase bottle allotments. We are still self-distributing in Colorado and we soon hope to be able to make more frequent deliveries to our favorite retail accounts. We are working hard at keeping the tasting room supplied with a wide selection of unique draft beers, including a new and ever-changing selection of bottles from our cellar for on-site consumption.
We are sincerely overjoyed to be a part of the Shelton family of breweries and absolutely cannot wait to be able to share our beers with everyone out there who enjoys them. We will announce specific areas where we will be sending beer soon. In the meantime, check the calendar (under “affairs”) on our website to see our current festival and travel plans as many of those locations will see some distribution around the time of our arrival.
James & Sarah Howat